Fans gathered to celebrate the life of murdered rapper Takeoff in an arena near his family’s home in Atlanta.
The 28-year-old, who was a member of the hip-hop trio Migos, was shot dead outside a Houston bowling alley earlier this month in an attack that also left another man and woman injured.
To commemorate the life and music of the star, whose real name was Kirsnick Khari Ball, the State Farm Arena held a special funeral service for her fans.
The home of the Atlanta Hawks basketball team lit up a huge image of the rapper outside the arena for the event, which saw Georgia fans receiving free tickets to enter.
Jenifer Loving, 22, stood in line with her newborn son, Mateo, for more than an hour before the doors opened.
He said Takeoff’s death was heartbreaking because he was so young.
Migos’ music represented the creativity and culture of the black community, he said, and he feared the group would be too saddened to make new music, at least for a while.
“It’s just something you can play anywhere, and everyone will go out, come back and dance,” he said.
“It’s the way it brings people together. It’s the way the whole room fills with positivity.”
‘I pray for them’
Eric Hood, an Atlanta firefighter, said he was shocked when he learned of Takeoff’s death from the three Migos members, he was considered the most relaxed.
Migos’ music was a “getaway” for many people, he said, and he hoped the event would leave his family and the rest of the group with lasting memories of him.
“I pray for them,” he said. “I hope they continue to be uplifting, positive and influential members in society and continue to move forward.”
The day after the shooting, Houston Police Chief Troy Finner said Takeoff was “well respected” and that “there was no reason to believe he was involved in anything criminal at the time.”
Fans have asked to donate to charity
The Grammy Award-nominated trio Migos also included Takeoff’s uncle Quavo and cousin Offset, and all three were largely raised by Takeoff’s mother.
Migos first rose to fame in 2013 with their hit Versace, which became even more popular when Drake remixed it.
They went on to have several hit tracks including 2016 Grammy nominated Bad And Boujee, Motorsport (with Nicki Minaj and Cardi B, who is married to Offset) and Stir Fry.
Migos’ record label Quality Control mourned Takeoff’s death in a statement posted on Instagram attributing him to “senseless violence and stray bullet”but the police have not confirmed this.
Instead of flowers or gifts, his family asked fans to donate to the Rocket Foundation, which was founded in Takeoff’s honor and aims to prevent gun violence.