Local man makes "The Voice," friends say he's an inspiration in - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Local man makes "The Voice," friends say he's an inspiration in many ways

Posted: Updated:

FORT PAYNE, AL (WRCB) - NBC's "The Voice" season 5 is underway and the Tennessee Valley is well represented.

23-year-old Justin Chain from Fort Payne landed a spot in the battle rounds, after being picked by country music singer Blake Shelton, but it's not just his voice that has America talking. He's beaten some tough odds.

"The Voice" star Justin Chain is back in the Nashville area, where he moved about a year ago to pursue a singing career. But, Tuesday night he was back home in Fort Payne watching the show with his buddies at Ol'Tymers BBQ. He's already got a growing fan base. They're calling themselves "the Chain gang".

READ MORE | Justin Chain's "The Voice" profile

Fort Payne native Justin Chain took to "The Voice" stage Tuesday night for the blind auditions on Channel 3. As country superstar Blake Shelton turned his chair, friends sitting next to Justin back at Ol'Tymers couldn't have been happier.

"I always knew he would make it. He's always just had that drive for it. He's not going to stop until he makes it so seeing him on TV is just great to see," Jonathan Whitmire said.

Best friend Jonathan Whitmire says his drive inspires everyone he knows. Justin shared his survival story on the show. In 2008 he had a near deadly motorcycle wreck in Fort Payne. Doctors didn't know if he'd live, let alone walk again.

"He's definitely a miracle. A normal person wouldn't have ever pulled through," Whitmire said.

That happened just a few months after he'd graduated Fort Payne High School, where he starred as Prince Charming in the senior play.

"The entire campus was nervous and potentially scared for if we would actually come out of the wreck alive," Fort Payne High School drama teacher Paul Crawford said.

"With my accident, we all went through that together," Justin Chain said.

On the phone Tuesday, Justin told Channel 3 his community has been by his side through it all, and their support is what's helping him go after his dreams.

"I mean it's one of the biggest opportunities of my life I want to share that with them," Justin said.

"I said to myself, wow he really sounds fantastic. His pitches were right on, his enunciation was fantastic and I think he could go a pretty good ways in the competition, shoot, maybe he'll even win the thing," Mr. Crawford said.

Fans back home agree with coach Blake Shelton's praise, but they want everyone watching to know that his heart is just as big as his voice.

"Good heart. Always there for you. So, he's the number one person I'd call if I need anything," Whitmire said.

Whitmire says Justin also saved his life once in a four-wheeling accident.

His fans in Fort Payne hope he makes it to the live rounds so they can show their support by voting.

Justin moved from Fort Payne to the Nashville area about a year ago to pursue his music career. Count on Channel 3 to continue following Justin's journey on "The Voice."

Powered by Frankly