A final goodbye began Saturday for the late hip-hop artist DMX in New York.
JOE TORRES: We begin with the homegoing celebration for Earl 'DMX' Simmons. Today, hundreds gathered in his hometown of Yonkers to honor his memory. They played his music as they took his casket to a memorial ceremony. Here is footage of the funeral procession entering the Barclays Center in downtown Brooklyn, and you can see a monster truck carrying Simmons's casket into the arena.
The memorial is closed to the public, but the service is being streamed on DMX's YouTube channel. It's been two weeks since Simmons died of a heart attack in White Plains. Eyewitness News reporter Naveen Dhaliwal joins us from the Barclays Center. Naveen?
NAVEEN DHALIWAL: Yeah, Joe, it's been a day of sadness, but mostly celebration as family, friends, and fans gather inside the Barclays Center, as well as outside, for Earl Simmons, popularly known as DMX. Now, a monster truck with a show casket made its way from Yonkers, where Simmons was raised, all the way here to downtown Brooklyn.
And it was quite a demonstration by the motorcycle club, the Ruff Ryders, that Simmons belonged to. The 50-year-old passed away from cardiac arrest just over two weeks ago, after spending several days on life support at White Plains hospital. Now, many remembering his life story from childhood, full of hardship, to the rise to stardom to become one of the top rappers of the 90s. Now, they're also remembering his love to help children, especially those who came from broken homes. About 2000 people are inside this event right here at Barclays, that is a ticket-only. That is 10% capacity, so all COVID safety precautions are being taken place.
DMX performed inside Barclays several times. The last time was in the summer of 2019, for the annual Masters of Ceremony show and today, again, they gather here to celebrate his life and his love for music.
- Lot of people loved him. Lot of people loved him. You can tell by the presence. Lot of people loved him. And good people, man. I met him a couple times, a good guy.
- We just came to rep X real quick. It's beautiful out here, all this collaboration-- the Ruff Ryders. It's dope, and we wanted to be a part of it.
NAVEEN DHALIWAL: And you can really feel the love-- you can really feel the love here in downtown, on the streets, from fans as they gather. Now, downtown Brooklyn, an absolute traffic nightmare as you can imagine, as streets are closed off for this event.
Again, this event is-- or this memorial is public. It is ticketed-- or for ticket only. A private funeral for the family is scheduled for tomorrow. And that is all we know about that. Reporting live from downtown Brooklyn, Naveen Dhaliwal, Channel 7 Eyewitness News.