It’s been two weeks since fans suffered a crushing blow with the loss of legendary rapper DMX. The rapper passed away at White Plains Hospital in New York on April 9 after suffering a heart attack. The root of his heart attack is from an apparent drug overdose.

The Grammy-nominated performer has struggled with a cocaine addiction since he was 14 years old. He’s opened up about his hardships dealing with the addiction and how a former mentor is the cause of it all. “He passed the blunt around and … I hit the blunt. I never felt like this before, it f—– me up. I later found out that he laced the blunt with crack,” he said in an interview with Talib Kweli

Throughout a remarkable, odds-defying career, DMX, aka Earl Simmons, established himself as a hip-hop icon. After many hit mixtapes, DMX landing a deal with leading hip-hop label Def Jam in 1998. He made history as the first artist to have his first five albums debut at No.1 on the Billboard 200 – with It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot (1998), Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood (1998), …And Then There Was X (1999), The Great Depression (2001) and Grand Champ (2003).

“DMX was a brilliant artist and an inspiration to millions around the world. His message of triumph over struggle, his search for the light out of darkness, his pursuit of truth and grace brought us closer to our own humanity,” DMX’s record label, Def Jam, said in a statement. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and all those who loved him and were touched by him. DMX was nothing less than a giant. His legend will live on forever.”

Along with his raspy voice and the hope he gave to the streets, DMX carried a special type of emotional vulnerability through his music. His faith in God spoke through his mic, making his live performances, which he started with prayer, seem more like a spiritual breakthrough than a concert. “All you need is faith the size of a mustard seed… all things are possible through Christ who strengthens me… it’s my destiny to be the best I can be…to give you the best of me,” he freestyled.

The founder of, Chuck Creekmur, spoke on the rapper’s cultural contributions to the hip-hop community.

“To know him was to love him. If you spent any time with DMX, you instantly fell in love with him,” Creekmur said. “For the most part, I had great experiences with him — always unique and always varied, but always an interesting experience. And that’s why so many people are heartbroken right now because DMX was a true man of the people … everyone has a DMX story.”

As you can imagine, X’s streaming numbers have exploded by more than 928 percent, and his 2003 autobiography is back on Amazon’s bestselling list. Earlier this year, DMX disclosed his upcoming album – which he said featured Lil Wayne, Snoop Dogg, Alicia Keys, the late Pop Smoke, and more! As fans and the hip-hop community continue to grieve, they have X’s legacy to hold onto and one last project to look forward to.