American rapper and actor Earl Simmons, known by his stage name DMX or Dark Man X, will be mourned by fans around the world in a livestreamed event from Brooklyn’s Barclays Center on Saturday.
Simmons, 50, died on April 9 after suffering a heart attack a week earlier, which many media outlets initially attributed to a drug overdose.
The memorial at the Barclays Center will be closed to the public but will be streamed live on DMX’s YouTube account at 4 p.m. ET (2000 GMT). A second event will be broadcast live on BET Sunday at 2:30 p.m. ET (1830 GMT) from an undisclosed church in the New York City area.’
Fans lined the streets as the red casket carrying DMX, born Earl Simmons, was carried atop a monster truck with the words “Long Live DMX” painted on the side. The monster truck played DMX songs and followed a procession dubbed “The Ruff Ryders 2 The Rescue: Ryde 4 Life” that started in Yonkers and made its way to the Barclays Center arena in Brooklyn.
His chart-topping songs included “Party Up (Up in Here)” and “X Gon’ Give It To Ya.” The Yonkers, New York native’s career had been marked by legal troubles and prison time, and a well-publicized struggle with drug addiction.
The musician’s family, in a statement to People magazine, said he died at New York’s White Plains Hospital with family by his side.
Twitter users posted videos showing crowds of bikers filling the streets, where a black monster truck carrying a red casket and painted with the words “Long Live DMX” slowly made its way towards the Barclays Center, a music venue and sports arena.
The truck was also spotted in Yonkers, New York, where the legendary rapper was from, according to ABC News.
One of his older sons read a eulogy through tears, and one of his young daughters performed a rap she wrote for the occasion. Another young son read a poem remembering DMX as “the best father anybody could ask for.”DMX’s daughter Sonovah Junior performed an original rap in a tribute to her father.”He taught me to be strong, but it’s OK to be afraid, ’cause sometimes it’ll show you how to be brave,” Junior rapped. “My brothers and sisters, we all stand together, throw up the X, daddy forever.”