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You are here: Entertainment Celebrity Gossip Rapper Heavy D dies at age 44

Rapper Heavy D dies at age 44

Heavy D, a rapper whose size and crossover success helped make him a major rap star, died Tuesday afternoon at a Los Angeles hospital. According to reports, the 44-year-old rapper was found conscious on the walkway near his Beverly Hills home around 11:25 am when a 911 call was placed.

He was rushed to a nearby hospital where he was pronounced dead at 1 p.m. PST. Police are investigating, but foul play is not suspected.

Grandmaster Flash was one of the first in the media to relay the news when he took to Twitter, saying "I was just told Heavy D passed away." That message created a snowball of reactions -- and prayers -- from fans.

Heavy D last tweeted 15-16 hours ago on Joe Frazier's death, "SMOKIN JOE FRAZIER..RIP.. truly one of the best heavyweight champs that ever lived.. GODS SPEED, MR FRAZIER!' An hour later tweeted,"BE INSPIRED!."

Born Dwight Errington Myers, D played a crucial role in hip-hop with his crossover, energetic early 90s hits, effortlessly incorporating reggae, R&B and pop.

Heavy D's most recent album, "Vibes" (2009), peaked at No. 2 on the Reggae Albums chart. His first No. 1 on the Rap chart was 1989's "Somebody for Me" and he later scored crossover hits with 1991's "Now That We Found Love" and "Big Daddy" in 1997. His highest charting single came in 1990 when he teamed up with Janet Jackson on the No. 4 Hot 100 hit "Alright (Remix)."

Last month (Sat., Oct. 1), Heavy D performed 80s classics -- "Nuttin' But Love," "Is It Good to You," and "I Want Somebody" -- at the 2011 BET's Hip-Hop Awards. Tyrse joined him on stage to sing the chorus to "Now That We Found Love," widely considered the star's most identifiable track.

Famous fans from throughout Hollywood are taking to Twitter to remember Heavy D and express shock at his sudden death. A roundup of who's saying what:

-Samuel L. Jackson: "Ahhh man! Heavy D?! Dwight wz a dear friend. Fond memories of a truly cool brutha."

-Usher: "This is too heavy, I can't believe it. HEAVY D was just here. Truly gone too soon. My heart and support goes out to his family. R.I.P HEAVY"

-Ne-Yo: "Man. I was just with Heavy D recently in London. Had I known it'd be the last time I'd see him, I woulda told him he was truly great. RIP..."

-LL Cool J: "May GOD embrace the soul of Heavy D and Bless his family. I respected you Heavy and I always will."

-Fred Savage: "Rest in Peace Heavy D. You provided the soundtrack to some of the best times of my teenage years. Your music will always make me smile."

-Eve: "RIP HEAVY D... Sending my prayers and condolences to family and friends"

-Joel Madden: "Heavy D was a truly positive and uplifting man. Rest in peace Heavy. Its a very Sad day today."

-Keyshia Cole: "When I met Heavy D.. He said 'believe U have a good soul, Sing with always having Something to say'"

-Big Boi: "R.I.P Heavy D a true pioneer may god bless your soul"

-Sinbad: "It is a sad day today .. My younger yellow brother from another mother 'heavy D' passed away today. I loved that brother. He was a good man"

-Alyssa Milano: "Heavy D gave me advice when I was pregnant. He said, 'Cherish every single moment. It goes by way too fast.' Rest in peace, Heavy D."

-Jill Scott: "Oh my heart aches!! In shock. Can't believe Heavy D is gone. Such a positive sweet hearted man. Please pray for his daughter."

-Wilmer Valderrama: "We have lost another member of Hip Hop's legacy, a TRUE Rap legend... 'Heavy D' RIP...... WV"

-Missy Elliott: "U will be missed Heavy D so many laughs we've shared but your Music is Timeless and will Always be Around 4ever Love u Heav..."

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