CHICAGO – Police are investigating after a local rapper, former TV host and beloved grandfather was killed in a shooting Tuesday on the West Side as he tried to stop an attempted armed robbery.
The shooting happened near North Lawndale and West Wabansia around 10:45 a.m. Tuesday morning in the city’s Humboldt Park neighborhood.
Family and friends of the victim, identified as Keltule Meeks, said the 48-year-old leaves behind two daughters and a grandson. His life was defined by selflessness, generosity and his passion for music.
“He was truly one of the best men you could know in life,” John Daniel said.
Daniel met Meeks, better known by his rap moniker, Rus T Blade, about 13 years ago through their work with Urban Grind TV. It was from there that a brotherhood and inseparable bond was forged.
“You would think he would have this gruff exterior, but he was the most joyful, outgoing, friendly person you could know,” Daniel said.
Meeks’ loved ones said he lived a life centered around putting others first, even in his final moments. He stepped in to help protect his wife and stop the attempted armed robbery when he was fatally shot.
“He loved his family, and he would do anything to protect his family,” Daniel said.
According to the Chicago Police Department, two people approached the couple in a white sedan as they were walking near their home. Two armed individuals got out of the car and demanded property, and at that time, Meeks stepped in and was shot in the face.
“It’s just so senseless,” said Daniel.
The entire incident was caught on a nearby home surveillance camera. The two people responsible were seen wearing masks and dark clothing.
In the moments after the shooting, video showed the two individuals run back to the vehicle and flee from the scene, leaving Meeks’ wife pleading for help. Several bystanders rushed over and called 911 as they attempted to render aid and comfort her.
Meeks was rushed to Stroger Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
“The world is robbed of his joy, his exuberance, his everything,” Daniel said. “I was just broken inside instantly. All of the good in the world just seeped from my soul at that point.”
Daniel said Meeks dedicated his life to his rap career and was also a host for a hip-hop program called Urban Grind TV. He said his friend knew how to make everyone feel welcome and comfortable, even if they were a stranger just moments before.
“He was an all-around great person,” Daniel said.
No arrests have been announced by police.
Anyone with information on the deadly shooting is asked to contact CPD Area Five Detectives at 312-746-6554. Tips for police can also be filed at CPDtip.com. Tips can be left anonymously.
Family and friends of Meeks are pleading with anyone who has information to come forward.
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