The Fulton Country Medical Examiner's Office has confirmed that Chris "Mac Daddy" Kelly died in Atlanta today, according to Fox 5 News. Details are still coming in, but the 34-year-old rapper was found unconscious in his home at 4:30 p.m. ET. After being transported to the south campus of the Atlanta Medical Center, he was pronouced dead an hour later. Officials won't rule on the cause of death until after the autopsy, but they do not suspect foul play.
Half of Kriss Kross, Kelly and partner Chris "Daddy Mac" Smith entered the hip hop world in 1992 with their hit single "Jump," which sampled the Jackson 5's "I Want You Back" and earned them a spot on Michael Jackson's Dangerous World Tour. The 13 year olds went on to sell more than 4 million copies of their first album, the Jermaine Dupri produced Totally Krossed Out. Their last joint project was Young, Rich and Dangerous in 1996.
After pursuing solo careers for more than a decade, the duo reunited to perform in February at a tribute concert marking the 20th anniversary of Dupri's So So Def label.
Kelly's mother, Donna Kelly Pratte, issued a statement via So So Def Records.
"It is with deep sadness that we announce that our beloved Chris Kelly has passed away on May 1. To millions of fans worldwide, he was the trendsetting, backwards pants-wearing one-half of Kris Kross who loved making music. But to us, he was just Chris – the kind, generous and fun-loving life of the party. Though he was only with us a short time, we feel blessed to have been able to share some incredible moments with him. His legacy will live on through his music, and we will forever love him."
We will have more details as they become available.
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(Photos from left: Michel Linssen/Redferns, AP Photo/Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Jonathan Phillips)
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