'The Voice' Contestant Reveals They Have Terminal Cancer, Marking Things Off Their Bucket Lists
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'The Voice' Contestant Reveals They Have Terminal Cancer, Marking Things Off Their Bucket Lists

The Voice contestant and country signer Matt Snook revealed that he has terminal cancer. He's trying to live life as much as he can by marking things off his bucket list. Audiences may remember him from Season 8 of The Voice. 

They say that the taste of death makes life sweeter, and Snook isn't letting his diagnosis stop him from living. Recently, he had the opportunity to compete at the 2024 World Series of Poker Main Event. It was a dream come true for the avid poker player. Snook has competed in tournaments since 2019.

"I had some friends get together, and they basically helped me out," Snook told PokerNews. "It's the coolest tournament in the world, and I love it."

However, it's all bittersweet. For many, life seems limitless. Everyone knows they're going to die one day, but they don't feel the ticking of the clock quite as much. Snook is well aware he probably won't get the chance to play another poker tournament. That makes it all the more special. "I got diagnosed with a rare form of kidney cancer January 3rd, and this is probably going to be one of my last hoorah's to play a tournament," Snook explained.

The Voice contestant explained that he started feeling unwell in late 2023. Doctors diagnosed him with sarcomatoid renal cell carcinoma (sRCC) in January 2024. "It starts in the kidney and goes to the bones. I have it everywhere," he said of his condition. They only gave him six months to a year to live.

Speaking with Platte County Citizen, Snook explained he thought he had a cold at first. Sadly, he's put his singing dreams behind him following the diagnosis.  "I couldn't breathe very well and had a persistent cough," Snook said. "My last musical performance was Nov. 12, 2023. I flew Michael Peterson in from Las Vegas to perform for a private event. He was very kind and helped me through a couple performances that weekend by carrying equipment and singing a couple extra sets."

'The Voice' Contestant Isn't Treating His Cancer

In January, he went to the ER because he knew something wasn't right. "At the ER, I was diagnosed with cancer, but the origin was not clear," Snook said. "Toward the end of January, after several procedures and a deep bone tissue surgery - I was diagnosed with Renal Cell Sarcomatoid Carcinoma. It is an incurable and rare kidney disease."

Snook is no longer treating his cancer because treatment didn't help the cancer. "I've lived such a blessed life, I feel good today, had a tough night last night, and I'm planning on trying to work through what I've got to work through," he said. "Poker players know that poker is a grind and life is a grind. But I don't want anybody feeling sorry for me. I don't want any empathy. I've just lived a blessed life and I'm glad to be here."

He had the opportunity to find an audience as a singer, and that's a dream he'll always be thankful for. "I've been very blessed. I've sang in deserts, and sang in hospitals, like in Iraq and Afghanistan," Snook said. Of his time on The Voice, Snook reflected on joining Team Blake Shelton and being on TV.

"That was a beautiful experience," he said.