Truett Foster McKeehan, the oldest child of Christian rapper TobyMac, has died at 21, a representative for the rapper confirmed to TODAY.
McKeehan, an aspiring rapper who released tracks under the names TRU, Shiloh, truDog and Truett Foster, was found dead at a Nashville-area home on Wednesday morning, according to multiple reports.
The cause of his death remains under investigation, local authorities told The Tennessean. The Nashville Fire Department received a call about a person in cardiac arrest and declared him dead on arrival Wednesday morning, according to The Tennessean.
In a statement posted to his website, TobyMac said, “Truett Foster McKeehan had joy that took the room when he entered. He was a magnetic son and brother and friend. If you met him you knew him, you remembered him. His smile, his laugh, the encouragement he offered with words or even without. He had an untamable grand personality and dreams to match. And he hated being put in a box.”
Calling his son a “true artist,” TobyMac recalled watching Truett perform recently.
“My last moment with Truett in person was at his first show this past Thursday at the Factory in Franklin, Tennessee,” he shared. “I had to leave the next morning very early to fly and start our Canadian tour. As I stood in the audience and watched my son bring joy to a room, I was as proud as a 'pop' (as tru called me) could be. It was the culminating moment of a dream that he had since he was 12. It couldn’t have been sweeter.
“Our music, and what we say lyrically couldn’t be more different, but the outcome was much the same ... offering a room full of people a few minutes of joy in a crazy world.”
McKeehan appeared on several albums by his father's former band, dc Talk, as well as TobyMac's solo albums.
TobyMac released a song called "Scars" last year that addressed the relationship with his son after McKeehan had moved out of their family home. McKeehan is the oldest of TobyMac's five children with his wife, Amanda.
"Now you won’t take my phone calls/You won’t text me back at all/I just wanna see you/I can’t stand to see you gone,'' TobyMac raps in the song. "Yesterday I missed you/Yesterday I played your song."
The rapper opened up last year about the emotions behind the song.
"The people I love the most are going out and facing the pain, the struggle and the temptation of this crazy world,'' he said in a video. "I’m very aware of the scars that come with life’s journey, but sometimes we insulate those things from the ones we love, our children."
He added, "I wrote this one for my boy. I wanted to let him know that I’m here for him and God is there for him. So lift your head, my son, to where your help comes from."