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Life 90.5 Remembers Mandisa: Bright Light and Ultimate Encourager

Back in 2013, every time a certain song would come on my radio, I would immediately crank up the volume, roll down the windows and sing to the top of my lungs. It became an anthem for this girl in her early 20s still trying to figure out life and relationships while walking with Jesus. It encouraged me to “just take a breath, don’t forget, hang on to his promises.” That song was “Overcomer” by Mandisa. 

Mandy Bowman here. When news broke early on Friday April 19th, 2024, of Mandisa’s passing the night before, I thought surely it was a cruel belated April Fools’ joke. But the social posts that followed from other artists and Mandisa’s friends repeatedly confirmed the bad news. Heartbreak rippled across the Contemporary Christian music world, engulfing artists and fans alike. Our own listeners were not immune to the pain.

Read on to see what Mandisa meant to Life 90.5 listeners, the artist’s closest friends, and an important lesson we can learn from this bright artist gone too soon.


Listener Reactions to Mandisa passing

On our social media post announcing the news, listeners share several kind, heart-felt comments and prayers for her family. Here are just a few of the examples of a difference she made in listener’s lives:

This is so sad! What a terrific singer and amazing woman. So sorry to hear of this. I love her music. My favorite song is Good Morning. Praying for her precious family. -Maria

Oh no! Oh my. This breaks my heart so much. She is one of my favorite artists! Gone way too soon from this world. But oh I can hear her now singing with the Angels for God. What a beautiful time for her now. God be with all the loved ones she left behind. – Autumn

I can’t believe I’m reading this!? Really and truly? I love Mandisa and she’s been an inspiration both in her physical journey as well as the uplifting music she’s produced. “Good morning” was my wake up song for years. “Stronger” was belted out in my car on the hard days. I’m so sad to hear this. May comfort and peace be with her loved ones. – Elisabeth

What does Mandisa and her music mean to you? Tell us in the comments.


Throughout the weekend following Mandisa’s passing, nearly every name connected with the Contemporary Christian Music industry shared their memories of Mandisa on social media:

Mandisa's smile was like turning on sunshine. She lit up every room she walked into and every stage she graced. We are all going to miss her light and that beautiful smile. And while we grieve, I can only imagine the Welcome Home she received.

Your smile and infectious spirit lit up every room. You were a true champion of others. I was the benefactor of your encouragement more times than I can count. Thankful for your music, your honesty and testimony that helped thousands upon thousands of people find the hope of Jesus… I loved your laugh. You were a true beauty inside and out. There will be a hole in the heart of our community that will never be filled until we see you again. I rejoice that you’re in the arms of Jesus, whole in every way, and understanding just how completely loved you have always been.

But the artist who probably knew her best was TobyMac. Here’s what he had to say:

We lost a beautiful soul… I have never met an artist who is more encouraging and supportive to other artists than Mandisa. She was honest and authentic but I always left her side feeling better. She watched every act, every night on every tour singing along with a smile that made you feel alive. From “Lose My Soul” to “Bleed the Same” to “Good Mornin’” I was honored to call her friend. She was honest about her struggles and viewed her break throughs as an opportunity to let others know that they can experience victories just like her. She saw us as a family. God’s family. In all our diversity. All flawed. And all in need of the love of a Good Father, a Heavenly Father. I know her battle is over but I will always treasure her memory and that smile and infectious laugh that I had the pleasure of experiencing.


This beloved artist was indeed a bright ray of sunshine. However, she was very honest about her previous struggles with mental health. She had had recently come out of a time of deep depression back in 2017 when she shared these 3 important things to do if you find yourself there:

  1. Stay in community with others (don’t isolate)
  2. Stop focusing on the past and start making plans for the future
  3. Look for flickers of light (friends reaching out, a song, a scripture, etc)

For more on her journey out of depression, order her book Out of the Dark: My Journey Through the Shadows to Find God’s Joy

If you’re struggling with depression and need someone to talk to, dial 988 or go HERE


You might be down for a moment
Feeling like it’s hopeless
That’s when He reminds you
That you’re an overcomer

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1 thought on “Life 90.5 Remembers Mandisa: Bright Light and Ultimate Encourager”

  1. This broke my heart. What a beautiful woman and her love for the Lord was truly wonderful. Her music is going to live on and inspire people. My prayers are for those she left behind. She is in the glory of Jesus and in Heaven singing with the angels. She will always be missed and remembered as a great singer.

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