On Saturday, the world discovered US rapper Mac Miller had died of an overdose.
He was just 26 years old.
“Malcolm McCormick known and adored by fans as Mac Miller, has tragically passed away at the age of 26. He was a bright light in this world for his family, friends and fans. Thank you for your prayers,” his family said in a statement.
Over the following two days, millions of tributes were posted online for the rapper who had always been candid about his issues with substance abuse.
Miller’s drug use reportedly become a large part of his life after the debut of his first album in 2010.
“I was doing a lot of drugs around that time, which is another difference now: I’m not doing as many drugs. It just eats at your mind, doing drugs every single day, every second. It’s rough on your body,” he said in a 2015 interview with Billboard.
“I’ve got to make sure I make all this music so when I die there’s albums and albums,” Miller said in the same interview.
Miller had been in a long term relationship with singer Ariana Grande, which ended this past May. The pair had remained friends.
On Sunday, Grande posted a black and white photograph of Miller, looking up at the camera, on her Instagram account.
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At first, fans were united in their grief for a talented man taken far too early. But then things took a dark turn.
People began to flood Grande’s Instagram with comments, blaming her for her ex-boyfriend’s death.
The trolling became so severe, Grande had to disable comments on her account.
What you guys aren’t gonna do is blame Ariana Grande for his addiction when he was struggling with it BEFORE they even started dating. Addiction is a horrible illness & hard to beat so instead of trying judge/blame everyone for it try to help/understand people struggling with it pic.twitter.com/akKiOMkBoW
— aja????????♀️ (@trappednerves) September 7, 2018
At the time of their breakup, Grande responded to a fan who was accusing her of leaving Miller for her now fiance Pete Davidson.
In her response, the 25-year-old detailed her toxic relationship with the rapper.
“How absurd that you minimise female self-respect and self-worth by saying someone should stay in a toxic relationship… I am not a babysitter or a mother and no woman should feel that they need to be,” she tweeted earlier this year.
“I have cared for [Miller] and tried to support his sobriety and prayed for his balance for years (and always will of course) but shaming/blaming women for a man’s inability to keep his (expletive) together is a very major problem. Let’s please stop doing that,” she wrote.
“Of course I didn’t share about how hard or scary it was while it was happening but it was. I will continue to pray from the bottom of my heart that he figures it all out and that any other woman in this position does as well.”
Mac Miller’s death is a tragedy. A preventable, unnecessary tragedy that we can only hope to learn from.
But it has nothing to do with Ariana Grande.