(AllHipHop News) A number of superstars gathered at the historic Grace Baptist Church in Mount Vernon, to pay their final respects to rap legend, Heavy D.
Heavy, born Dwight Arrington Myers, collapsed and died in front of his Hollywood condo on November 8.
So far, an autopsy result has been inconclusive, but foul play or drugs have been ruled out.
Today, his life and many accomplishments were celebrated in Mount Vernon, where he was raised.
The funeral started with a reading from the Old Testament, followed by a solo performance by Kim Burrell.
Johnny Gill followed more scripture reading with an emotional rendition of the song “Never Could’ve Made It,” while offering the family comforting words.
R&B star Anthony Hamilton gave an emotionally charged performance of Sam Cooke’s classic, “A Change Is Gonna Come.”
The current Mayor of Mount Vernon and Mayor Elect Ernie Davis Jr. spoke about Heavy’s influence.
“I’m the mayor of ‘Money Earning’ Mount Vernon,” Ernie Davis said. “You [heavy family] gave us the city’s Crown Prince. I often say that there is no better blessed four square miles on the face of this earth. The talent that this city has produced has had an impact on this world. Super Bowl rings, Oscars, Tonys, Grammys. You can debate our city’s influence. One thing that you cannot debate. Heavy D. put Mount Vernon on the map.”Gospel star Yolanda Adams was up next, singing “Just a Prayer Away.”
“He gave us big gigantic hugs and that’s what I loved,” Yolanda Adams said. “That was one of the last things I received as we paid tribute to Michael Jackson.”
Reverend Darin Moore and Reverend Al Sharpton offered words of comfort to family and friends.
Andre Harrell spoke next and explained how Heavy called and called and explaining that he wanted to be a rap star.
“He charmed me. When I signed him I came to Mount Vernon and met his parents,” Andre Harrell said. “His mom told me make sure you take care of my son. I don’t know if I took care of him or he took care of me. He was my first artist on Uptown. he brought in new jack swing, Pete Rock or Diddy, Heavy put them all on his back. Before there was Big Pun, Fat Joe, before Rick put the Rozay to his name there was Heavy D.”
Reverend Al Sharpton spoke on Heavy’s good nature and presented a special plaque to Heavy’s daughter Xea.“Don’t sit here crying for Heavy, look at Iyourself. Heavy wrote himself in the book of time. I come today really though to give his daughter something. She will have to deal with the legacy of her father. I brought her something. I want you to keep this Xea,” said Reverend Sharpton, handing Heavy’s daughter a plaque with a hand written message from President Barack Obama.
“My father was a wonderful man. He’s still not in flesh but in spirit and in love,” Xea said. “We are here to celebrate his love and passion. I love you daddy and we will miss you.”
Sean “Diddy” Combs spoke, sporting a black sling, the result of a recent shoulder operation.
Diddy remembered Heavy D. as the first person to give him a shot, ultimately paving the way for his extraordinary accomplishments as a business man.“I had an idea that I wanted to manage Heavy D. The only problem was I didn’t know him,” Sean “Diddy” Combs said. “I just knew we were from the same town. So I made a plan to bump into him. So I would stand on his block hoping he would stop and roll down his window. He would pull up and talk to me and I would be his manager. That didn’t work well, because he kept driving by. But then I found out about a pizza shop he liked. So I would hang out there. My plan worker. I met him at the pizza shop. He was the type of guy to hear you out. I asked him if he would help me meet Andre Harrell so I could get an internship at Uptown. He got me the chance to work with Andre and the rest is history. A lot of our dreams came true, thank god.”
Pastor W. Frankyln Richardson gave the Eulogy for Heavy D.
As the funeral ended, hundreds of late model black cadillacs, escaldades and luxury cars flooded South 6th Avenue, prompting police officers to close streets.