Remembering Nipsey Hussle

Nipsey speaking to children at an event in Los Angeles last year.

Nipsey speaking to children at an event in Los Angeles last year.

Grammy-nominated rapper, Nipsey Hussle (33), was fatally shot and killed Sunday March 31st, in front of his clothing business ‘The Marathon’ in South Central L.A. The rapper was shot six times along with two other unknown victims who survived the shootings. The suspect was identified by the Los Angeles Police Department as Eric Holder (29) who is now currently in police custody. Nipsey’s passing was a big loss to hip-hop and his community where he was loved and respected for his contributions.

Nipsey Hussle, whose birth name was Ermias Joseph Asghedom, was born and grew up in the Crenshaw district of Los Angeles, California. Nipsey’s father was an Eritrean refugee that fled his country due to the ongoing war with Ethiopia, and his mother was of African American descent. Hussle was apart of the notorious Rollin 60’s Neighborhood Crip Gang, which he initially joined as a teenager while working on his own music. He dropped his first project titled “Slauson Boy Volume 1” which was followed by two more projects dropped in 2009 before his first record deal with Epic Records, which he dropped another project with, and then joined the XXL freshmen class of 2010. Due to complications with his record label, Hussle was relieved from Epic Records in late 2010, which pushed him to pursue and start his own record label, “All Money In”, and dropped multiple more projects, some of which include his famous projects such as ‘The Marathon’ and ‘Crenshaw’  until his final debut studio album titled “Victory Lap” which was nominated for a Grammy last year.

Nipsey’s influence went farther than just his music, as he still remained an active member in his community constantly working to revitalize where he grew up. The inspiration and contributions he spread into his community was the reason why he was loved so much in his neighborhood. Apart from being a rapper, Hussle was an entrepreneur, an advocate for black rights and for the empowerment of the youth, a father of two, a husband, son, brother, a friend to many, and most importantly a role model for millions. Nipsey contradicted the typical stereotype of a rapper, he hired members of his community who were felons and couldn’t find employment elsewhere to his businesses, opened up science, technology, engineering, and mathematics center for the children in his community, and donated money to those who needed it the most. “He was always trying to do good for n***** man,” said rapper The Game in an emotional Instagram video dedicated to his long-term friend Nipsey.

Nipsey redefined what is meant to actually hustle and work hard for what you really want in life, receiving his first Grammy nomination after 12-15 years of consistency and determination and constantly preaching hard work.“I’m about seeing long-term, seeing a vision, understanding nothing really worthwhile happens overnight, and just sticking to your script long enough to make something real happen.” Alumni Ermias Kahsay a long-term fan of Nipsey, when asked what Nipsey represented for him, said, “He represented dedication and hard work, he made me see hustle over success, doesn’t matter if you’re making 5$/hr or 20$/hr, hustle is a hustle.”
Nipsey believed that life was a marathon not a race and anyone can change for the better.

Nipsey’s life long work will continue to live on through the words of wisdom he preached, lyrics he rapped, and lives he touched. The Marathon will continue, RIP Nipsey Hussle.