Crystal Bowersox Is Born

To reach Elliston, where Bowersox was born and raised and her father still lives, it's best to avoid Google Maps.

Sometimes you get Graytown, the next town over, sometimes Elliston. Elliston does not appear on many GPS units either, and the Ohio Department of Transportation official state map includes no mention. Elliston is roughly 20 miles southeast of Toledo, and, depending on who's answering, 90 people live there, give or take a dozen. Stand in the center of Elliston and turn slowly, and you will see no more than a couple dozen houses, a few farms, two churches and the remains of an old gas station. Walk over to the gas station. There's a single pump, the glass across its face jagged and smashed, the price ticker stopped at 30 cents a gallon.

Bowersox was born in Elliston, Ohio. She is a single mother of one son. She also has a fraternal twin brother. Crystal attended Oak Harbor High School in Oak Harbor, Ohio, where she was on the swim team.[citation needed] She later attended the Toledo School for the Arts in Toledo, Ohio.

During her days as a struggling musician, she played as a busker at several train stations, particularly when she lived in Chicago. She also played extensively in Chicago's Lakeview neighborhood. Before Idol, Crystal performed gospel music at her church.