Nick Cannon's 5-month-old son dies of brain cancer

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  • Nick Cannon
    Nick Cannon
    American rapper, actor and comedian

Nick Cannon's youngest son, Zen, has died from a form of brain cancer, the entertainer tearfully announced Tuesday on The Nick Cannon Show

Cannon said Zen at first seemed to have "like a sinus thing, it was like a cough, and I just wanted to check it out."

"He always had this real interesting breathing. And by the time he was two months ... I also noticed he's got like a nice-sized head — I call it a Cannon head. ... We didn't think anything about it," he said. "But I wanted to take him to the doctor for his sinus and breathing. So we thought it would be a routine process."

That's when doctors discovered Zen had fluid building up in his brain. 

"And we found out it was ... a malignant tumor in his head," Cannon said. "And so immediately we had to have surgery. It was brain surgery and we put a shunt in his head and we were hoping for the best."

But around Thanksgiving, he said, Zen's condition took a turn for the worse. "It was cancer in the brain, and the tumor began to grow a lot faster."

He broke down in tears as he described taking Zen to the ocean on Sunday, and then holding him for the last time.

Zen — nicknamed "Z Chillin'" — was born in June to Cannon and model Alyssa Scott. 

Cannon described his youngest son as "the most loving" child who was "always smiling" and had "the most beautiful spirit." 

According to Entertainment Tonight, Cannon will be taking time off from his show and cancelled some recordings for the week. He dedicated Tuesday's broadcast to Zen.

"I didn't know how I was going to handle today. I didn't know how, but I just really wanted, you know, I wanted to grieve with my family," he said pointing to the audience. 

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