Rapper DMX dies aged 50 after complications from suspected drug overdose and heart attack

DMX. Photo credit: Getty

Rapper DMX has died following a suspected drug overdose and heart attack, having been on life support since he was admitted to hospital on April 2. 

His family confirmed the sad news on Saturday morning (NZ time). 

The 'Party Up' hitmaker had reportedly been in a "vegetative state" with "lung and brain failure" after suffering a heart attack at his home, according to an earlier statement given by his former manager to Buzzfeed. 

TMZ reported the "battery of tests" performed on the rapper on Wednesday local time "showed no improvement in brain activity since he was rushed to the hospital". DMX reportedly had "little brain function" having been deprived of oxygen for nearly half-an-hour. 

DMX's ex-wife, children and fiancée were among hundreds of people that crowded the street outside White Plains Hospital earlier this week where a prayer vigil was held. Videos of the event shared to social media showed people standing on cars, revving motorbikes and blasting his songs while chanting "DMX!" and sobbing.  

The hip-hop icon has had a long and public struggle with drug addiction and has spent time in rehab and locked up on drug charges in the past. His most recent stint in rehab was in 2019. 

His hospitalisation triggered an outpouring of support from fellow artists such as Missy Elliot, Chance The Rapper, Mariah Carey and Eminem. 

"We are deeply saddened to announce today that our loved one, DMX, birth name of Earl Simmons, passed away at 50-years-old at White Plains Hospital with his family by his side after being placed on life support for the past few days," his family said.

"Earl was a warrior who fought till the very end. He loved his family with all of his heart and we cherish the times we spent with him. Earl’s music inspired countless fans across the world and his iconic legacy will live on forever. 

"We appreciate all of the love and support during this incredibly difficult time. Please respect our privacy as we grieve the loss of our brother, father, uncle and the man the world knew as DMX. We will share information about his memorial service once details are finalized."

DMX released his debut album in 1998 before dropping his best-selling album And Then There Was X the following year, which featured the hit single 'Party Up (Up In Here)'. 

The Grammy-nominated artist has four children and was married to his ex-wife Tashera Simmons until from 1999 - 2014. He was engaged to be married to Desiree Lindstrom.