Chris Medina Chris Medina

Chris Medina made headlines when he auditioned for American Idol's Season 10, not just because of his musical talent, but because of his emotional backstory. Medina's fiancé was seriously injured in a car accident two months before they were supposed to get married. Today, they're both fighting for her recovery. We talked to the former Idol hopeful about Jennifer Lopez emotional reaction to his elimination, and his decision to reveal their story to America.

TV Guide Magazine: The taping of your elimination happened fairly recently. Was it hard to see it on TV so soon after?
Medina: The wound was still fresh when I saw it again on TV, but you know what made it easy? When Jennifer Lopez gave me the boot, she did it so nice, I was like, 'All right.' I've got this philosophy: Don't expect to be anywhere. Just be happy where you are. I kind of went in there going, 'If I get eliminated, you're all right.' Not only did she say it nice. Not only was I kind of okay with it to begin with. Seeing her react the way she did on TV a week later. I was just like that, that was so sweet. I was like, no hard feelings.  Everyone on there is fantastic. I was in great company, and I just feel blessed.

TV Guide Magazine: So there are no hard feelings? 
Medina: Not at all. Jennifer Lopez is beautiful, fabulous, talented. For her to say, you just didn't quite make it, rather than go, listen, dude, you totally sucked. Don't do this ever again. That was really nice.

TV Guide Magazine: When you auditioned, at what point did the producers become aware of your backstory?
Medina: It was right before I went on TV that they found out.

TV Guide Magazine: Were you hesitant at all about sharing it on TV? 
Medina: Absolutely. Oh, my goodness, because I've got my fiancé in such a vulnerable state. I felt bad that I was even doing it because I've got this beautiful girl who can't do anything right now. And here I am auditioning for something. But it just kind of dawned on me. I was like, wait a second. If I can get her story out there, maybe there is somebody that can help. You've got to understand. I work for Starbucks. I make lattes for a living. And as a guy, who's devoted to his girlfriend, how the hell am I supposed to take care of this girl? I wanted to take care of her. I wanted to figure out a way to do it. If I can get her story out there, maybe there's a doctor out there who can help. Thank God, the outreach has been wonderful. People have donated money and medical supplies, and their medical services for free, and vans and wheelchairs. As a result of it, she's healing faster. She's fighting more. She wants to get out.

TV Guide Magazine: What is her state of awareness? 
Medina: She's pretty aware. She kind of knew that I wasn't going to win. If you ask her, "Hey, how do you think I'm going to do?' she's like, 'You're probably not going to win.  You'll probably be like number 14.' I'm like, 14? Such an odd number. She's so aware, that her biggest obstacle right now is probably depression. She's trying to overcome the fact where she was and she's where she's at now. It's been a year and five months since the accident, if I didn't feel that she was there, I don't know if I could be there. It's a tough situation because there's parts of her personality that sometimes comes through and sometimes doesn't. I made a deal with her. I'm like, you know what? I know you're there.  I know you're smart. You keep trying. I'll keep trying. That's all that matters. We'll see where we end up. She's my best friend. She's always been my best friend, and I cannot go on with my life without seeing that she's okay. Ever since this audition, I thought people are going to think I was exploiting her. Maybe it wasn't such a bad idea to get her story out there. Maybe someone really will feel, 'I can help this girl.'

TV Guide Magazine:
Would you audition it again? 
Medina: Absolutely.

TV Guide Magazine: Are you going to do it again? 
Medina: Oh, I don't know. I just released a single, right now. I have a lot of good things that are kind of happening, right now. I guess I just got to see where the road takes me.

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