More details are emerging regarding the untimely death of New York rap legend Heavy D. According to Ed Winter of the Los Angeles County Coroner’s office, the beloved artist, born Dwight Errington Myers, was already ill before he collapsed Tuesday morning just outside his Beverly Hills condominium.
“He had gone to the doctor the day before,” Winter told New York’s Daily News. “He had what appeared to be flu-like symptoms.”
He said he had a touch of pneumonia, maybe from traveling,” cousin Ruddy Phillips, 50, told the Daily News after speaking with the entertainer’s dad. “He just got back from England.”
The Overweight Lover was conscious though experiencing trouble breathing when he was transported to Cedars Sinai Medical Center after a 911 call was placed at 11:25 a.m. PT on his behalf Tuesday. However, he was pronounced dead at 1 p.m. PT. Although an autopsy has been performed, the coroner is declining to announce any cause of death until toxicology tests are conducted due to Heav taking various medications.
The Mount Vernon, New York, rapper’s death hit many close to heart, including Eddie F, who along with dancers G Wiz and the late Trouble T Roy were the “Boyz” in Heavy D & the Boyz. The DJ and producer called into MTV News’ “RapFix Live” on Wednesday and revealed how he found out about the unfortunate news.
“I had gotten a call from a few of the guys from our crew, and I thought they were calling me about something else that we were working on,” Eddie F told MTV News. “They told me the news, and at first I didn’t believe ’em. I was like, ‘There’s no way.’ And then I got a call from G Wiz, and then I started making calls. I actually spoke to Andre Harrell, and he had Puff on the other line and everybody was just getting information and really just hysterical. From there, we started getting bits and pieces in.”
Heavy D & the Boyz were the first act record executive Andre Harrell signed to his Uptown Records, which released the act’s debut, Living Large, in 1987. While at Uptown, Sean “Diddy” Combs got his start in the music industry as Harrell’s intern. Naturally, they all became close friends with the universally adored Heavy D, whose music was well regarded by all types of music fans.
“Heavy was always a class act,” Eddie F said. “The thing that he did that may be apparent, but maybe a lot of people didn’t pay attention to it, he was the type of rapper like the hardest, hardest, hard rock was a fan of his, and he would move on the street. But then he was also respectful and your mother, your grandmother could listen to Heavy D. He was always stylish and fashionable and he was a professional, he was a hard worker.”