Louisiana supporters of 'American Idol' contestant Joshua Ledet say they are feeling more pride than disappointment after Ledet's elimination from the Fox reality singing competition.
After weeks of standing ovations from the show's judges, Ledet received the fewest viewer votes and was eliminated from the competition Thursday night.
Still, the Louisiana native is being called a winner by many in his home state.
Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne says Ledet's singing career got a boost during his 'Idol' run, and the state got good publicity.
For instance, the world looked on as Ledet showed 'Idol' host Ryan Seacrest how to peel a crawfish.
The show also followed Ledet to his hometown of Westlake for a parade and concert.
His drama teacher from Westlake High School, Kerry Onxley...aka 'Mr. O', says this isn't a bad thing. He says everything happens for a reason.
"Josh still has a wonderful career ahead of him. He still will go quite far in the industry. His career is just starting. This is good spring board."
Josh made a post on Facebook telling his fans not to be sad that he was eliminated, because he just signed a huge deal.
Mr. O says that when Josh was in town last weekend, he and Fox surprised his drama teacher with two tickets to the show's finale.
"Joshua named me as his mentor. Therefore, it's an all-expense paid trip to Hollywood to visit with him and the other contestants, the judges and such. I just got the details from Fox, and it's definitely a red-carpet treatment," said Onxley.
Josh will be performing on the finale next week.
Josh's mom posted on Facebook that this is not the end for Josh, but just the beginning.
Mr. O says the first thing Josh will do this summer is tour the nation with the 'Idol' Top 10. He says after that, the possibilities are endless for the gospel singing, dancing and acting sensation.
"Start recording music. He could go on a small tour. And there's his stage work," Onxley says. "He could continue his stage work. He could easily go to Broadway and just do guest appearances, you know, he could do Broadway for a couple months at a time or something."