Nipsey Hussle's death sent a shockwave through the entire hip-hop community. Legions of fans, collaborators, industry leaders, and public officials have spent the days since his death paying tribute to the multi-hyphenate, and applauding the philanthropic spirit he so fearlessly embodied. Following Nipsey being gunned down outside his Marathon Clothing storefront on Sunday, March 31, those closest to the rapper have opened up about how much he meant to them, as well as the broader community he was trying to uplift.
Samiel Asghedom, Nipsey's older brother, reflected on his family's loss during an interview with ABC News. "He was somebody that believed in the process of hard work, determination and just the positivity of somebody staying in the area that he grew up in and making something out of nothing," Asghedom said. "He was a role model to the community, to the kids, and to the mothers and the grandmothers and the community that watched him grow up and seen him as a youngster, [and now] a family man, a father, raising his kids."
The Grammy-nominated artist used his platform to demonstrate what can be accomplished when you apply an entrepreneurial spirit towards the betterment of a community.
"Growing up, when he was a teenager—I’m a little bit older than him, he was in the streets and gangs, trying to hustle and get money. I was trying to make sure that he’s safe and that he’s legitimate and doing something positive and that was my whole goal. You know, at the end of the day, he’s the one who actually made me have something legitimate to be able to attach myself to,” Asghedom said. “It’s hard that he was killed, man. It’s hard.”
Asghedom remembered the long-lasting impact that Nipsey had on Crenshaw, as well his dedication to the neighborhood that shaped who he ultimately became. "Why do you have something in this area?" and "why don’t you leave and do something else?" were constant questions Nip was asked, his brother said. "But he was murdered while he was in a parking lot, hanging out, selling CDs and that’s the area that he felt attached to and did everything in the area and ended up buying a lot and rehabilitating, opening up businesses and just became a landmark for everybody."
In light of Nipsey's countless humanitarian efforts, Congresswoman Karen Bass, who represents the city of Los Angeles, announced Thursday that she intends on formally entering the rapper's contributions to South L.A. into Congress' official record. In an effort to immortalize Nipsey's philanthropy, Bass will ensure that the rapper's legacy "will be a part of United States history forever."