Rapper Clifford "T.I."
Harris mourned the loss of his best friend and personal assistant at a funeral
service held yesterday (May 8) in Atlanta.
26, of Union City, Ga., was killed last Wednesday (May 3) and three other members
of T.I.'s entourage were injured in a shooting incident following a performance
at Bogarts nightclub in Cincinnati. T.I. was not hurt.
The rapper paid
his final respects during the funeral service at Jackson Memorial Baptist Church.
"I spent a
lot of time holding the microphone and performing, but I ain't never did nothing
quite this hard," T.I. said. "For my partner, I ain't even going to
focus on no negativity. Family forever, and I love you."
A heavy police
presence greeted those who came to pay respects to Johnson. Police cars and
motorcycles lined the street outside the church and officers stood guard in
the church sanctuary but didn't search those entering the church.
The Grand Hustle
Entertainment family, Atlanta rappers Killer Mike and Yung Joc, DJ Toomp, ATL
director Chris Robinson, Warner Music Group president Kevin Liles and V-103
personality Frank Ski were among the estimated 950 friends, family, fans and
entertainers in attendance at the funeral.
Ski referred to
Johnson as a "fallen soldier who was a good man, a very good man."
T.I. was one of
the pallbearers who helped lift Johnson's casket into a black horse-drawn carriage,
which escorted him to Lincoln Cemetery in northwest Atlanta, where he was buried.
No arrests have
been made in conjunction with the shooting incident, which halted T.I.'s nationwide
tour that kicked off last month.
T.I. was set to
appear in St. Louis on Wednesday night, and while many reports say that the
rapper will resume the tour, T.I. has not yet made any final decisions.
"I don't know
if I'm going to be in New Orleans Tuesday," the rapper told the Atlanta
Journal-Constitution. "It's hard to say. Because there are so many
things that Philant would be doing that ain't going to be able to be done now."