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October 20, 2014

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Country music singer Kevin Sharp dies at age 43

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Sue Veldkamp / AP

This image provided by Sue Veldkamp shows a book cover of Kevin Sharp. Sharp, a country music singer who recorded multiple chart-topping songs and survived a well-publicized battle with cancer, died Saturday April 19, 2014, in Fair Oaks, Calif. He was 43.

FAIR OAKS, Calif. — Kevin Sharp, a country music singer who recorded multiple chart-topping songs and survived a well-publicized battle with cancer, has died. He was 43.

His sister Mary Huston said Sharp died at his mother's Fair Oaks, Calif., home, at 10:49 p.m. Saturday of complications from past stomach surgeries and digestive issues.

"He had a strong heart, that's what kept him alive, (but) I'm so happy for him, that there's no more suffering," Huston said through tears and exhaustion. She had cared for her brother since his return home to Northern California last Friday after 10 weeks in the hospital.

Sharp gained fame with the release of "Nobody Knows," a single on his 1996 debut album, "Measure of a Man." He released two other albums, "Love Is" in 1998 and "Make A Wish" in 2005.

Born in 1970 in Redding, Calif., Sharp was diagnosed with Ewing's sarcoma, a rare form of bone cancer, as a high school senior. He overcame it after two years of chemotherapy and radiation.

The Make-A-Wish Foundation granted Sharp's wish to meet Grammy Award-winning music producer David Foster, who gave him tips to help jump-start his career.

Sharp also became a motivational speaker, a spokesman for the Make-A-Wish Foundation and wrote "Tragedy's Gift," a 2004 book about fighting cancer.

For the last several years, Sharp had struggled from past stomach surgery and residual issues from his aggressive cancer treatment.

"His dream came true through music, and he touched thousands of lives, and he helped heal the soul of people dealing with cancer," Huston said.

Sharp is survived by five brothers, two sisters and his mother.

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