Biz Markie’s death hurt the hip hop community, but some of the most affected people were the family members he spent his final days with. With that in mind, the Obamas sent their love to his widow in a touching letter that has been publicly shared.
“We wanted to extend our heartfelt condolences to you as you reflect on Biz Markie’s life,” the former first couple wrote to Tara Hall. “We didn’t know Biz Markie as long or as well as you and your loved ones did. But like others who admired him, he holds a special place in our hearts as one of rap’s most innovative stylists and as a great man.”
“Biz Markie brightened every room he was in, and we will always appreciate him for his early support in 2008, bringing people together to ‘Party with a Purpose’ and get out the vote. His legacy in hip hop will span generations just as it has for nearly four decades,” they continued, adding hopes that the family cherish their memories and know that they are in the Obamas’ prayers.
According to TMZ, Hall was “stunned” by the gesture and plans to one day frame the heartfelt letter.
Biz passed away last month following years-long complications with Type 2 diabetes. This past weekend, the likes of Roxanne Shante and Al Sharpton remembered the hip hop icon at his funeral, while others including Fat Joe, Ice T, Montell Jordan, Busta Rhymes and LL Cool J attended to pay their last respects.
“The thing I’m going to miss the most about him was every time he would see me, his face would just light up with that Chiclet, toothy smile,” Hall said of her husband at the service. “Seeing him smile made me smile. He made me laugh every day. That is not hyperbole. That is a fact.”
In honor of Biz, TMZ reports that Hall is launching the Biz Markie’s Just A Friend Charity Fund, which will support organizations like DC’s Bread For The City and Soles4Souls that were previously backed by the late star.
See the letter Hall received from the Obamas below.