YouTube star Olivia Wise died on Monday from an inoperable brain tumor. The 16-year-old became famous in her final weeks when a Katy Perry song she recorded in September became a viral hit. The teen recorded Perry’s song “Roar” after learning there were no more treatment options available for her tumor.
The video was posted on YouTube and immediately went viral, prompting a video response from the singer telling her to “keep roaring.” The cover video has over a million hits. Wise’s family announced her death in a statement to CNN, writing, “She died peacefully in her home surrounded by the extraordinary love of her family.”
Katy Perry sent her own tribute to Olivia Wise after learning of the teen’s death. She wrote on Twitter:
Olivia Wise, I can hear you singing with the angels now. Your spirit strength has inspired me so many others… May you rest in peace.
— Katy Perry (@katyperry) November 26, 2013
Wise’s cover of “Roar” features the teen sitting in a wheelchair in the middle of a recording studio. She struggles for breath as she sings the lyrics, “Cause I am a champion, and you’re gonna hear me roar.” Under the post, Wise’s cousin wrote, “Olivia is a fighter and has gone through the fire. In fact, she was going through the fire while she recorded this song, but you wouldn’t know it, because she was dancing right through it.”
Wise’s mother added in a letter that the teen didn’t want people crying at her funeral. Instead, she wanted them to celebrate her life.