The 36-year-old star, real name Adolph Roberton Thornton Jr, was gunned down on Wednesday outside Makeda’s Cookies near Memphis International Airport in the US state of Tennessee.
Memphis Police said they had no information on the possible suspect in the shooting, but a search was underway.
TMZ reported that a vehicle stopped after Dolph entered the store and shot through a front window, hitting the rapper.
He had been in town since Monday visiting an aunt with cancer and was also handing out Thanksgiving turkeys, his cousin Mareno Myers told The Daily Memphian newspaper.
“He was inside and someone rushed at him and killed himself,” Myers said.
TMZ also reported that Dolph’s attorney said he was in town for his “annual Thanksgiving gift” and mainly lived in Atlanta.
He was due to hand over a truckload of turkeys to residents of his former hometown on Wednesday afternoon – and had planned to go to the event after visiting the cookie factory, the publication reported.
Who was young Dolph?
Young Dolph had been targeted in the past – a survivor of two previous shootings.
In September 2017, he was shot and killed several times after a fight outside a Los Angeles hotel. He was shot in the arms and buttocks and spent two weeks in the hospital. Months earlier, in February, his SUV was shot down in Charlotte, North Carolina, more than 100 times.
The February 2017 shooting was the inspiration for the song 100 Shots, with the rapper later saying he survived because of his vehicle’s bulletproof panels, according to The Commercial Appeal.
Born in Chicago on July 27, 1985, Dolph moved to Memphis at the age of two. He has released numerous mixtapes, starting with the 2008 Paper Route campaign, as well as several studio albums, including his first King of Memphis in 2016. He has also collaborated on other mixtapes and albums with other rap artists. , including Key Glock, Megan Thee Stallion, TI, Gucci Mane, 2 Chainz and others.
The rapper had three albums reaching the top 10 on the Billboard 200, with Rich Slave in 2020 peaking at number four. His music told stories of drug dealing and life on the streets of Memphis.
Video of the crime scene circulating online showed a heavy police presence, with people recording the aftermath on their phones. It also shows the rapper’s car parked in front of the store.
As recently as last week, the cookie shop posted an Instagram video of Dolph promoting the shop’s cookies, saying he visits whenever he’s in Memphis.
Dolph had been admired by many in the industry for his independent approach to the music business – much like Los Angeles rapper Nipsey Hussle, who was killed in 2019.
His label Paper Route Empire retained control of its material.
Tributes have been pouring in from personalities in the music industry since the news of his death.
Chance the Rapper tweeted, “God bless Dolph. A true independent rapper from Memphis born in Chicago. loved by millions of people. “
God bless Dolph 🕊 True indie Memphis rapper born in chicago. loved by millions of people. I always showed love every time I saw him, it’s tragic that God bless his father
– Chance the Rapper (@chancetherapper) November 17, 2021
Gucci Mane posted: “RIP my friend Dolph, this broke my heart. “
Singer Jacquees wrote: Rest In Peace Young Dolph [sic] Smh Dawg ».
Record producer Omen also posted a tribute on Twitter, saying, “We are already losing too many black men to poor health, racism, prison, etc. we have to find a way to heal and not add to it with our own violence. prayers for young dolph family and friends. RIP. ”
APA, the rapper’s art agency, said it was shocked and saddened to learn of his death.
“The world has lost an icon, a great man and a beloved artist who was kidnapped too soon,” the agency said in a statement.
“His dedication, drive, hard work and loyalty to everyone around him has always come first and he will be sorely missed. ”