Singer Loses Half Her Tongue to Cancer, Performs Beautiful Rendition Of ‘It Is Well’

After losing a part of her tongue to cancer, this Las Vegas woman still uses her voice to sing and praise God.


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A post shared by Elly Brown | Entertainer (@realellybrown) on

Elly Brown’s doctors told her that she had tongue cancer, and her career as a singer, actor and model all came to a stand still. But now, after one year of life-saving surgery, she can not only talk again, but has learned to sing as well and is using her voice to praise God.

Brown first learned to sing when she was 6 years old, her sister was in a high school production of the musical “The King and I” and asked Elly to take part in it. She took to singing and loved it so much that while she was growing up, she started looking out for more chances to sing and perform.

Brown moved to Las Vegas, and used her music and theater experience to pursue on-camera hosting and modeling jobs. It was in high school that she had first spotted some spots on her tongue, but her dentist told her to just observe them as she grew up. But in 2004, another dentist took a biopsy of the area as it was getting worse and told her that she had an auto-immune disease called lichen planus, which wasn’t of much concern.

But as time passed, her condition worsened and in 2017, an oral surgeon told her that he felt a lump where the spots were, and after some tests, he concluded it was cancer. The lump was removed through surgery in March of 2017, and caused only minor disruptions in her career.


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A post shared by Elly Brown | Entertainer (@realellybrown) on

As she was recovering from the surgery, she was experiencing intense pain in her ear and couldn’t sleep at night. She again went to her doctors and asked them to run a biopsy on the back of her mouth, the tests showed that she had developed a much more serious form of cancer and had a 3-centimeter tumor on the back of her tongue.

This meant that Elly had to undergo more surgery and this time it was going to have a far bigger impact on her life in comparison to the first one. Doctors removed the tumor, but they also took tissue and muscle from her leg to replace part of her tongue. “At the end of that surgical procedure, I couldn’t really breathe on my own, I couldn’t walk on my own and I couldn’t eat on my own,” she said.

“It was a lot,” she said. “But there was never a question in my mind that I would recover. I just knew I would. I had the Holy Spirit in my ear every single day saying, ‘Look, I know today is tough but just wait. Wait and see.’”

It was Elly’s faith that helped her during the entire process from diagnosis to recovery and she said that she was thankful to God for the uncertainty because she grew in faith during that season. “I’m grateful for that period of time too because that’s when you put yourself firmly in the palm of the Lord,” she said.

She had to wait for the swelling to go away before she could begin singing again, and even though the surgery impacted her mouth movements, and the radiation affected her tone, she says, “I will never operate at the level that I did before,” she said. “But what I’ve been left with I’m so grateful for and I will try to make the most of it because some people get nothing.”


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A post shared by Elly Brown | Entertainer (@realellybrown) on

Now she has started recording videos to share her story with others. “Without even realizing it, I had been given this niche of a very small community of people who also are very lonely and have had trouble finding others like themselves.” The videos are only a part of how she connected with the community of people going through the same situation, she also interacts with people through email building a community in that way too.

Watch Elly Brown singing beautiful rendition of ‘It Is Well’.

Elly says she is thankful for the cancer she had which helped her connect with others in the same situation. She hopes her story helps to encourage people to get tested if they have concerns about cancer, as it would later on deprive loved ones of future time if they delay in doing so.

She hopes she can help people realize their dreams, she says that she has been able to reach more people with her singing now than before as a ‘normal’ person. She says that God has given us these gifts lovingly and tenderly.

She adds, “When we sit with these problems … and we really consider how many other people might be feeling this same way and how we can extend our hands to another person,” she said. “It’s a miracle that happens.”

Yes we agree that miracles do happen when we reach out to other hurting people and share our experiences and solutions with them, Elly’s faith in God helped her to overcome every barrier in her life and she is a living example of being positive and full of light even in the most negative situations.

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