Geto Boys’ Bushwick Bill Not Dead, Still Fighting Cancer: Publicist

Geto Boys’ Bushwick Bill Not Dead, Still Fighting Cancer: Publicist
Bushwick Bill (R), joins Deftones' Chino Moreno onstage at the SPIN Party at Stubb's during the South by Southwest Music Festival in Austin, Texas on March 18, 2016. (Jack Plunkett/Invision/AP Photo)

DALLAS—Representatives of pioneering rapper Bushwick Bill say he is hospitalized in critical condition but still alive, contrary to some reports.

Bill’s publicist, Dawn P., told The Associated Press that the rapper is on a ventilator at a Colorado hospital. She says hospital officials confirmed Bill’s condition on the morning of June 9 and that his family is traveling there to be with him.

Pete Marrero, Bill’s Dallas-based business manager, says the 52-year-old was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer in February and is not expected to recover. Bill, whose legal name is Richard Shaw, had been planning to go on tour around the time he was hospitalized.

Bill is a founding member of iconic Houston rap group the Geto Boys. The Jamaica-born performer was widely reported to have passed Sunday after a bandmate wrote a post on Instagram suggesting he had died.

Scarface, Bushwick Bill and Willie D of the Geto Boys
(L-R) Scarface, Bushwick Bill and Willie D of the Geto Boys perform on stage at the Growlers 6 festival at the LA Waterfront in San Pedro, Calif., on Oct. 29, 2017. (Matt Cowan/Getty Images)

Bill told TMZ that he was diagnosed in February.

He said that he has been undergoing chemotherapy, but his prognosis is unclear.

“And I was like, stage 4? I have been getting tested for a mass but it was benign,” Bill told TMZ. “So, I am like could it be cancer? I was told it is mass with no purpose. So to find out, and pancreatic cancer is undetected until it’s in the fourth or fifth stage.”

He said he kept the diagnosis private until now.

“I have been keeping it to myself and I am getting ready to tell Scarface and Willie D [fellow Geto members]. I have only told close family members and that’s about it,” he continued. “But I figured keeping it to myself is not helping anybody. It’s not like I am afraid of dying, because if anyone knows anything about me then they know I died and came back already in June 19, 1991. So, I know what it is like on the other side and that really not what it’s about.”

Rapper Bushwick Bill
Rapper Bushwick Bill arrives at the G.O.O.D Music “Heavenly” Grammy After Party held at The Lot Studios in Los Angeles, Calif., on Feb. 8, 2006. (Matthew Simmons/Getty Images)

The Geto Boys rose to fame in the early ’90s.

The group’s DJ, Ready Red, died from a heart attack last year.

The CNN Wire contributed to this report.

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