Rapper Nipsey Hussle’s Inspiration Will Continue Far Past His Death

Nipsey Hussle, a Grammy nominated rapper, was shot and killed on Sunday outside of his Marathon clothing store in the Crenshaw area of Los Angeles. A longtime community philanthropist and activist, Hussle had been scheduled to meet with the L.A. police commissioner just two days later about ways to help stop gang violence.

Early Tuesday morning, the LAPD announced that they have identified a murder suspect by the name of Eric Holder who approached the three men standing at the storefront and fired numerous shots at them. Hussle was shot multiple times and died from his wounds.

News of Hussle’s death almost immediately went viral, as people took to the internet with an abundance of grief-filled posts. Among those grieving were celebrities like Rihanna, Jhene Aiko and Drake.

Hussle, age 33 when he died, was a father of two and a proud husband. He had a violent past and had been outspoken about his affiliation with the Rollin’ 60’s, an LA-based gang that is connected to the Crips. Since his public acknowledgement of his ties to the Rollin’ 60’s, Hussle had distanced himself from the gang and devoted his time to helping underprivileged groups in inner-city Los Angeles. 

By 2018, he had co-founded a STEM center for underprivileged youth in the Crenshaw area, partly dedicated to raising awareness for the lack of diversity in science: “What Silicon Valley is saying to justify that lack of diversity is that there’s no pipeline from the inner city to Silicon Valley,” he told Complex in 2017. “The reason that there’s no pipeline is that we lack science, technology, engineering and math skills, and you can’t teach a 13-year-old that; it’s too late. They gotta be trained in that.”

Countless people were touched and inspired by Nipsey’s music, message and person. Several UCLA students discuss his influence on their lives below:

"Nipsey Hussle was special to me because he gave me perspective. TMC, Nipsey's motto, reminds me, through good and bad, that life goes on through all the highs and lows. It reminds me to never quit, and that's helped me on and off the court. Of course, not everything he's done or said was positive, but Nipsey uplifted a lot of people through hard times with his music. He won't be forgotten." - Jaylen Hands, UCLA Basketball

“Growing up in L.A., Nipsey was my city’s mascot, in human form. He cheered all of us on, to seek more, and never give up. I’ll never give up, Nipsey. You are the epitome of the motivation and the inspiration. The Marathon Continues, forever.” – Ashley Williams, English major

"For me specifically, he taught me to stay focused, grind, be great in all my endeavors and to motivate my peers to do the same. His focus on ending gang violence and bringing us together is what I admire so much about him. Protecting the streets and advancing the culture. He never forgot where he was from. He’s going to be missed tremendously but his influence and legacy will definitely live on." - Jasmine Truley, Philosophy major

Nipsey Hussle's inspiration will live on forever in the lives that he touched. Click here to sign the petition to rename the intersection of Crenshaw Blvd and Slauson Ave "Nipsey Hussle Blvd" to honor his life and work.