The X Factor’s Freddie Combs Shares His Hopes To One Day Stand & Sing Again
First Published: October 1, 2012 7:18 PM EDT Credit: Access Hollywood
LOS ANGELES, Calif. -- Freddie Combs, who used to weigh over 900 pounds, became an “X Factor” sensation the moment he began to sing on last week’s show. Access Hollywood spent the weekend at home with Freddie and his wife, Kay, where the singer revealed that something Simon Cowell said touched him quite a bit.
“When he said to me he had a vision of me standing and singing it spoke directly to me because I also had that vision of me standing and singing,” Freddie, who performed his audition in a wheelchair, told Access.
“It is gonna be a hard road, it’s painful — literally — it’s physically painful for me. My muscles are atrophied. They give out and I have to rework them to be able to stand again,” he said.
With a positive and fun loving attitude, Freddie has lost 400 pounds from his high of 920 pounds in 2009.
Once bed bound, the “X Factor” contestant moves around in a wheelchair in his home in Newport, Tenn., even able to cook dinner with his wife, Kay.
Now able to stand for 45 seconds at a time, it’s been a long road of weight loss to get to this point.
“When I was in kindergarten, I probably weighed between 75 and 90 pounds,” Freddie said.
Entering high school at 300 pounds, Freddie believes he prevented bullying through his sense of humor, and making jokes before others could.
“My 17th birthday, I remember this specifically — I wanted to start a diet,” Freddie recounted. “I did not have anywhere to weigh [myself] because… I couldn’t weigh on those scales [at the doctor’s office]. I remember going to local meat market and going around to the back alley and weighing [myself] and I weighed 411 pounds. That was on my birthday. That birthday I did not eat birthday cake. I was extremely depressed that day.”
When Freddie married Kay in 1996, he weighed 550 pounds. She began caring for Freddie a few weeks into their marriage.
“There’s a lot of grain silos in Illinois,” Freddie said. “I knew they had a scale you could drive up on, so one night, really late we went out – it was like 12:30 AM, I said, ‘Pull over there. You look at the thing and you tell me how much it is when I get back to the car.’ So, I went and walked on to the scale and I stood there and I went back to the car and she said, ‘It said you weighed, 580,’ and I was like, ‘Oh, my lord!’
“Then, I remember when I hit [the] 700 mark, and finally, I went into a nursing home in Akron, Ohio, in 2005 for bariatric rehab, which is a fancy word for help for fat folks,” he continued.
Weighing 835 pounds, Freddie lost 150 pounds only to put it back on again when he left. He then went into another facility, and upon release, ballooned from 650 to 920.
Then, in June 2009, Freddie almost died. He developed a severe case of carbon dioxide poisoning and remained in a critical care unit for three weeks.
“I received a miracle from [the] Lord. In two weeks, I lost 200 pounds. It was fluid, but when you’re 920 pounds you take any way you can get it,” Freddie said. “From that point on, I’ve lost 400 pounds and I’m so grateful. Literally, I thought I’d die in that condition.”
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