After a judge ordered the estate of the late hip hop legend Nate Dogg to pay an Orange County, California hospital nearly $300,000 in unpaid bills, United Music and Media Group CEO David Michery says he's the one who's been left with the hefty tab.
Michery, a close associate of the West Coast rap icon, tells TMZ that he signed on the dotted line to take on the healthcare debt because no one else in Nate Dogg's life would step up.
"I was the only person who would come forward because I didn’t want him to die," Michery said. "Me and Nate have 20 years history together and I did what everyone should have done and tried to save his life ... not let him get kicked out in the streets and die." Michery added that "none of Nate's so-called rapper friends" offered to chip in to help.
Nate Dogg was cared for by CareMeridian hospital between 2008 and 2010 after he suffered a second stroke. The hip hop singer died last year from ongoing complications.
Reached by TMZ, known close friend and Nate Dogg collaborator Warren G said he did all he could for his fallen friend, but simply couldn't afford to take on his healthcare bills.
"I rode with Nate 'til the end ... I did what I could do for him with other things financially," Warren said. "If I was able to pay for his hospital bill, I would have. I made several calls to numerous people for help. I love Nate ... he's my brother."
Michery said he plans to pay the debt by releasing several previously unheard Nate Dogg songs, which he says are in his possession.
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(Photo: REUTERS/Adrees Latif)