Celebrities visit XXXTentacion's memorial service to pay their respects
Last week, on June 18th, rapper XXXTentacion was shot dead after leaving a motorcycle dealership in Florida. One man, 22-year-old Dedrick Williams, has already been charged with his murder, and it is believed that another person connected to the attack is still on the loose.
In the days following his death, social media was flooded with messages of condolences for the young star - but also posts from people who refused to exonerate him of his former crimes in the wake of his death.
Regardless of his former felonies, though, many people were quick to pay their respects to X; and yesterday, more than a week later, thousands of people turned up at his memorial service at the Florida Panther's Stadium in order to say one last goodbye in person.
X, whose real name was Jahseh Onfroy, was laid out in an open casket and fans were invited to see him before the funeral service. According to the New York Times, his body was "dressed in a blue denim jacket under soft lighting, laid in a dark polished coffin at center stage, [and] surrounded by a spray of black flowers with metallic accents."
"A security guard said about 1,000 people are at XXXTentacion’s viewing now [around midday]," tweeted someone who was present at the memorial. "They expect about 19,000 people to come total throughout the day."
Several celebrities turned out to show solidarity with other fans, with PnB Rock, Ugly God, Denzel Curry, Lil Uzi Vert, and Lil Yachty all reported to have been present at the stadium.
"As lil uzi was standing at the casket, X‘s song Hope began to play," reported one attendee. "At the beginning of the song X dedicates the song to the victims of the Parkland shooting. He says Rest In Peace to victims of the Douglas shooting. At that point I saw a high school aged girl with her mom cry."
Lil Uzi was particularly close to the deceased rapper and recently announced that he had plans to start a foundation to support X’s family.
Fans who were present at the memorial shared their thoughts about X, with some of them having travelled across the country in order to be there for him.
"We wanted to say our last words and show our respect ‘cause he helped us so much," said 19-year-old Santino Coccia, who had driven 18 hours from Philadelphia in order to be first in line for the service. "His music was something to relate to when there was nothing else."
Another 19-year-old fan, Rico Hendrix, added: "He had a troubled past and stuff, but he wanted to spread positivity at the end of his life. He saw that negativity was not the answer."
Writing on Instagram, his mother, Cleopatra Bernaid, said of the service: "He considered you all family, and I wanted to do something special for you all."
X touched thousands of young lives and is sure to be missed by many. His killers will hopefully be brought to justice very soon.