Thousands gathered at Atlanta’s State Farm Arena on Friday to honor the life and legacy of Takeoff, who was fatally shot in Houston on Nov. 1.
Among those present to pay their respects were fellow rappers Migos Quavo and Offset, who both gave speeches at the memorial service, as well as Cardi B, Drake, Gucci Mane, Cardi B, City Girls, YG, Lil Yachty, Cee-Lo Green, Teyana Taylor, Rich the Kid, Russell Simmons, Murda Beatz and Mustard.
Additionally, the service, called Celebration of Life, included musical performances from Chlöe Bailey, Justin Bieber, Yolanda Adams and Byron Cage. The late rapper also received the Phoenix Award from Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens at the memorial.
“I don’t want to question you, God, but I don’t understand you sometimes,” Offset said, addressing the attendees, according to rolling stone.
Drake, who collaborated with Migos on hit singles such as “Walk It Talk It,” also delivered a eulogy in Takeoff’s honor during the service. Comparing himself and Migos to the Rat Pack (Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr and Frank Sinatra), Drake recalled his tour with the trio.
“I miss playing with my brothers,” Drake said. “After all these years of watching Dean Martin, I realized I wanted to grow old with my friends. We should do that more.
Pierre “P” Thomas and Kevin “Coach K” Lee also spoke at the memorial.
After the emotional service, Cardi took to Instagram to pay tribute to Takeoff with a heartbreaking message.
“The takeoff of your untimely passing has brought so much pain and heartbreak to so many lives,” Cardi wrote. “The impact you have had in this world has been so great and it has been hard for us to come to grips with this tragedy. I am heartbroken but grateful for all the precious memories we were able to share while you were here. here with us.
“It has truly been a nightmare and the pain is beyond compare. The emptiness your brothers feel is unbearable and I pray that you give Offset, Quavo, and your friends and family the strength to carry on as they try to cope with this loss.
She added: “I believe that angels send signs and sweet dreams to their loved ones to assure them that they are looking at them and that they are well and happy…send your mother some of these [praying emoji].”
Quavo also took to Instagram to remember Takeoff, writing, “I knew you weren’t my brother because you’re my sister’s son so I couldn’t say brother. Now I finally get it… You are OUR angel.
You can read Takeoff’s official obituary, real name Kirsnik Khari Ball, below.
Bal Kirsnik Khari
June 18, 1994-November 1, 2022
Kirsnick “Takeoff” Khari Ball, 28, of Atlanta passed away on Nov. 1, 2022, after an untimely incident took him decades before his time. Kirsnick (or Takeoff, as fans, friends and family all called him) was a sweetest soul, with a peace around him alongside wise demeanor far beyond his years. Endearing and impressive both on stage and in private, Takeoff has commanded respect wherever his path has taken him from musicians, family, industry and peers alike.
What mattered most to Takeoff was his family and he was known to spread true love into all the lives of everyone who knew him. Beloved son of Titania “Treet” Davenport and Kenneth Ball, Takeoff (or Kirsnick) was Edna Marshall’s most loving grandson and most devoted nephew and artistic collaborator of Quavious “Quavo” Marshall. He is survived by his siblings Ezekiel Davenport and Heaven Davenport, Aunt Kashara Reed and many cousins.
He was an incredible talent who led an extraordinary life; from being a kid growing up in Gwinnett County making music in his grandmother’s basement to performing around the world on arena tours with hundreds of thousands of screaming fans testifying to his prowess lyrics every year. He was a critical darling with the press often touting him as a great lyricist and rapper of our time and a fan favorite. His deep bond with his uncle Quavious Marshall known to the world simply as “Quavo” took them from childhood family members to deep musical partners in the supergroup Migos alongside the friend of childhood Kiari “Offset” Cephus. Migos changed music as we know it and changed the style of rap for nearly a decade after their first viral hit and unique uses of adlibs and puns. Takeoff’s contribution to culture through Migos and beyond with his own solo album and recent critically acclaimed album with Quavo is part of music history with chart-topping hits, rave reviews, TV moments, Billboard #1 charts and billions of music streams. Takeoff and the team went from viral internet up & comers in the basement to chart topping artists wearing the cover of Rolling Stone and Grammy nominations.
Born in Atlanta, Georgia, Takeoff attended Berkmar High School in Gwinnett County and claimed that when they were all playing sports (Quavo and Offset) he was training to be a rapper. A sweet anecdote at school before rap won the 4e spelling bee! All he ever wanted to be was a rapper – that was his singular goal and he achieved it in monumental fashion. He has always loved music, rap, anything related to space and watching movies and TV series. On a human level, it was simple: when Takeoff smiled, you thought everything would be fine. He was a deep thinker and it showed in conversations and veiled in rap lyrics.
Takeoff’s greatest passion in life was music, and all he wanted to do was leave a mark and have a legacy that lasted decades, as he once told Complex magazine during of an interview for a cover story. His mom Treet would play him all the Hip Hop she loved and as soon as he could crawl he would head over to the speakers and get back up to dance and switch to bass. From an early age, he always intended to be a rapper, his favorites being Lil Wayne and the whole Cash Money crew. His curiosity and his love of rappers were immense and he followed all the artists who came out of the underground to the big stars, always going through Youtube watching everyone’s videos. If you were an artist who released a video, then Takeoff saw it! He was a true and deep fan of Hip Hop and remained a student of it until his dying day, even though he himself was considered a master by so many.
Notable moments in his short but massively seminal career: over 17 billion streams, two albums debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard Charts and stayed in the Top 10 for 21 weeks, global hit “Bad and Boujee” n °1 breaking records worldwide, a world arena tour alongside Drake, two performances on the legendary Saturday Night Live aka SNL, a hilarious Carpool Karaoke with James Corden viewed over 61 million times, gracing the Rolling Stone coverage at headlining festivals around the world. The impact of his Migos group remains profound.
During the last months of his life, Takeoff turned to writing and recording with Quavo to create their joint album “Only Built For Infinity Links” which received critical acclaim and debuted with a performance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. The campaign was just beginning and plans to tour and distribute the music around the world were underway.
There are no words or feelings conveyed that could well encompass the love so many people had for him and the impact he had on this world. Takeoff would like the world to see the light in what it has created and to continue to rise up and support the creations that people put out into the world. He is now at the height of the stars he loved so much and remains in all our ethers on a daily basis through his music and the love he brought to so many people.
In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the Rocket Foundation: https://www.rocket-foundation.org