DMX dead at 50: Rapper dies after 'drug overdose triggered heart attack and left him in vegetative state'

RAP icon DMX has died aged 50 after a reported drug overdose triggered a fatal heart attack.

The Harlem native, known for a series of chart topping hip hop anthems, suffered a drug overdose at his home at around 11pm on April 2 and was rushed to hospital.

* Read our DMX live blog for the latest news and health updates..

A statement from his family confirmed that DMX, real name Earl Simmons, passed away in a critical care unit in a hospital in White Plains, New York.

Family described him as a "warrior who fought till the very end" adding that he "loved his family with all of his heart."

"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," the statement read.

The family then asked for privacy while they grieve the loss of "the man the world knew as DMX." They added that information about his memorial service will be released once details are finalized.

TMZ cited a source close to the rapper as saying the drug overdose had triggered a heart attack.

It comes as the Ruff Riders Anthem hitmaker remained in hospital in a "vegetative state," while another source stated the musician had "some brain activity."

DMX reportedly struggled with drug addiction throughout his adult life – and has openly addressed the issues within his songs.

In 2016 Page Six reported DMX stopped breathing and had no pulse after suffering a drug overdose in a Westchester, New York parking lot.

Luckily, a medic on hand administered Narcan, an anti-opioid used to reverse the effects of a heroin overdose, according to police.

The rapper became “semiconscious” and was rushed to a nearby hospital where he received treatment. 

And in 2018, he was jailed for one year for failing to pay tax on income earned from 2002 to 2005, and from 2010 to 2015.

On top of the prison sentence, he was ordered to pay back $2.29m back to the US government.

DMX was often hailed as one of NY's most prolific rap artists.

He first appeared on the LL Cool J hit "4, 3, 2, 1" in 1998 and got his first taste of Top 40 airplay as part of the LOX's "Money, Respect".

His 1998 debut album, "It's Dark and Hell Is Hot", debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 and remained on the chart for 101 weeks.

DMX's career continued to be prolific, with his best-selling album," … And Then There Was X", cementing his place as a shining light of hip hop music upon release in 1999.

He went on to release seven studio albums throughout the course of his career.

X has also successfully ventured into film, featuring in movies such as Belly, Romeo Must Die, Exit Wounds, Cradle 2 the Grave and Last Hour.

And In 2006, he starred in the reality television series DMX: Soul of a Man.

In August 2020, X announced he was working on his first album since 2015's "Redemption of the Beast" LP.

As news began to break Saturday of his hospital admission, high profile stars sent their well wishes to the Harlem-born rapper.

Information of X's condition first started to circulate when famed NY rapper Eric B shared an image of himself and DMX.

He captioned the image: “Please pray for my brother DMX,” along with the hashtag #DMXhospitalized.

Rick Ross was among the first to break the news.

Sharing on Instagram story, Ross wrote: ‘Prayers up for DMX the legend, let’s put that in the sky.

Ja Rule, who was in rap group Murder Inc. with DMX and Jay-Z, was one of the first to send X well wishes, tweeting: "Prayers up for my brother DMX,” he wrote on Twitter.

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