Posts tagged with "Cardiac Arrest"

Black Rob and Sean Combs illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

Black Rob Has Passed Away

Black Rob, Rapper and Former Bad Boy Artist, Has Passed Away at 52 Years Old

Best known for his 2000 single “Whoa!” the rapper was recently hospitalized in Atlanta

Robert Ross, the rap artist known as Black Rob, died April 17 at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta. Fellow Bad Boy rapper Mark Curry stated the cause of death was cardiac arrest, according to Pitchfork. He added that Black Rob was dealing with a number of health issues prior to his death, including lupus, kidney failure, diabetes, and multiple strokes. Black Rob was 52 years old.

“I don’t know where to begin this, but I thank everybody for the donations. Rob passed away about an hour ago,” a teary-eyed Curry said in a video. “I need for his daughter, Iona Ross, little Robert Ross, y’all get in touch with me, please.”

In a second video, Curry stated that he had spoken to Bad Boy founder Combs for the first time in 15 years following Rob’s passing.

“I just want to say thank you. We really did some amazing stuff. RIP to my brother. I was dead with him, I was dead with him,” Curry said. “I ain’t talk to Puff in 15 years. We talked today. This is the beginning of a new us. Rob made sure he knew what he had to do before he parted this world to make sure we all alright — and that’s what he did. Bad Boy for life, yo.”

Diddy posted a tribute on Instagram, stating: “Rest in power King @therealblackrob! As I listen to your records today there’s one thing that they all have in common! You have made millions of people all over the world feel good and dance! You are one of a kind! GOD BLESS! Love. You will be truly missed!!!!”

Born Robert Ross in Buffalo, N.Y., the Bad Boy rapper grew up in East Harlem where he began rapping as a preteen leading to the formation of his first group, the Schizophrenics. He released four studio albums, his most successful being his 2000 debut “Life Story.” Rob is best known for his hit single “Whoa!” which peaked at No. 43 on the Billboard Hot 100. Along with Curry, Rob was featured on Sean “P. Diddy” Combs’ “Bad Boy 4 Life,” which charted at No. 33. Though he left Bad Boy Records in the mid-2000s, Rob reunited with the crew for select dates of the Bad Boy Family Reunion Tour in 2016.

DMX illustration by Heather Skovlund (Photo Credit Jonathan Mannion) for 360 Magazine

DMX

Official Statements from DMX’s Family & White Plains Hospital

“We are deeply saddened to announce today that our loved one, DMX, birth name of Earl Simmons, passed away at 50-years-old at White Plains Hospital with his family by his side after being placed on life support for the past few days. Earl was a warrior who fought till the very end. He loved his family with all of his heart, and we cherish the times we spent with him. Earl’s music inspired countless fans across the world and his iconic legacy will live on forever. We appreciate all of the love and support during this incredibly difficult time. Please respect our privacy as we grieve the loss of our brother, father, uncle and the man the world knew as DMX. We will share information about his memorial service once details are finalized.” – Earl “DMX” Simmons’ Family

“White Plains Hospital extends its deepest condolences to the family of Mr. Simmons, as well as his friends and legions of fans who expressed their unwavering support during this difficult time. Earl Simmons passed away peacefully with family present after suffering a catastrophic cardiac arrest.”   

When it comes to DMX, a man blessed with a vicious bark of a voice, there is no such thing as half-stepping. Born Earl Simmons in 1970, the Yonkers-raised MC arrived as the physical embodiment of unbridled energy—a one-man distillation of fellow rugged New York acts like Wu-Tang Clan. With the release of his 1998 debut, It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot, DMX wrapped himself in musical aggression that enhanced his imposing presence across songs like the minimal, clanging “Get at Me Dog” and rowdy breakout “Ruff Ryders’ Anthem.” But X scaled back the pugnacity on that same album’s introspective “How’s It Goin’ Down,” which featured angelic vocals from R&B’s Faith Evans and painted a vivid picture of a complex relationship headed down the wrong path. DMX would revisit that sensitivity on “Slippin’,” a heart-rending track from 1998’s Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood that found him expressing a desire to live a less tumultuous life. As at odds as the rapper’s two sides may seem to be, he’s always thrived most while letting his emotions fly unrestrained. In 2000, he released …And Then There Was X, where even the anthemic “Party Up” served as a prime example of DMX’s uniquely intense take on hardcore hip-hop. But whether ferocious, amped up, or introspective, the MC has remained grounded by his faith, which, especially in the later years of his career, he approaches with nothing short of absolute devotion.

Following the deaths of Tupac Shakur and the Notorious B.I.G., DMX took over as the undisputed reigning king of hardcore rap. He was that rare commodity: a commercial powerhouse with artistic and street credibility to spare. His rapid ascent to stardom was actually almost a decade in the making, which gave him a chance to develop the theatrical image that made him one of rap’s most distinctive personalities during his heyday. Everything about DMX was unremittingly intense, from his muscular, tattooed physique to his gruff, barking delivery, which made a perfect match for his trademark lyrical obsession with dogs. Plus, there was substance behind the style; much of his work was tied together by a fascination with the split between the sacred and the profane. He could move from spiritual anguish one minute to a narrative about the sins of the streets the next yet keep it all part of the same complex character, sort of like a hip-hop Johnny Cash. The results were compelling enough to make DMX the first artist ever to have his first four albums enter the charts at number one.

Photo Credit: Jonathan Mannion

Photo credit: Jonathan Mannion

Student Invention Gives Patients the Breath of Life

Natalie Dickman squeezed the bag again and again in an effort to revive a victim of cardiac arrest. After a mere 3 minutes, she could squeeze no more. 

“The patient had been down for 30 minutes and there wasn’t much hope, unfortunately,” said the Rice University student, a soon-to-be graduate of the Brown School of Engineering, who was covering a shift with Houston EMS as required by a Rice class in emergency medical techniques. “I was allowed to bag, but they make you switch in EMS settings because they know you won’t be as accurate once you hit that 2-to-3-minute mark. You get really tired.”

She thought about that often over the last year when she and her senior teammates worked at Rice’s Oshman Engineering Design Kitchen (OEDK) to perfect a cost-effective device that automates the compression of manual bag valve masks, which feed fresh air to the lungs of intubated patients. 

The senior capstone design team — bioengineering students Dickman, Carolina De Santiago, Karen Vasquez Ruiz and Aravind Sundaramraj, mechanical engineering and computational and applied mathematics student Tim Nonet and mechanical engineering student Madison Nasteff — is known as “Take a Breather.” 

The team has developed a system that compresses the bags for hours, rather than minutes, with settings to feed the right amount of air to adults, children and infants. The device seems simple — a box with paddles that rhythmically squeeze the bulb a programmed amount – but the engineering behind it is not.

The students used a $25, off-the-shelf motor and $5 microcontroller to power and program the rack-and-pinion device made primarily of plastic parts 3D-printed at the OEDK. They hope their use of inexpensive materials and the growing availability of 3D printers will make their machines easy to repair on-site.

They anticipate the device, which cost them $117 in parts to build, will be most useful in low-resource hospitals or during emergencies when there aren’t enough portable ventilators to meet the need. 

Dr. Rohith Malya, an assistant professor of emergency medicine at Baylor College of Medicine, brought the problem to the OEDK after witnessing family members at the Kwai River Christian Hospital in Thailand, where he is director of emergency medical services, squeezing intubation bags for hours on end to keep loved ones alive. 

“There is no reliable ventilation,” said Malya, who spends a month at the hospital every year. “Once we intubate somebody, the family has to bag the patient. But the family will get tired after a day and say, ‘They’re not getting better right now, just pull the tube and see what happens.’ And then the patient dies.”

Malya previously worked with Rice engineering students to develop a syringe regulating pump, and did not hesitate to bring a new idea to the OEDK. 

“The bag mask is ubiquitous, like the syringe,” he said. “Nothing has challenged it for 80 years. It’s stood the test of time, it’s reliable and it’s simple. And now we’re adding a modification to the original device so families don’t have to make those decisions.

“This will broaden the access to mechanical ventilation to a tremendous part of the world that doesn’t have typical ventilators,” said Malya, who plans to take the proof-of-concept device to Thailand for field testing next spring. 

The device is much smaller than the sophisticated ventilators found in American hospitals and portable versions used in emergency situations. Critically, it has to be able to operate for long stretches. In its most recent test, the team ran the device for more than 11 hours without human intervention.  

The students expect another Rice team will build a more robust version next year, and hope it will eventually be manufactured for use in low-resource and emergency settings. They anticipate a better-sealed and filtered box will be more suitable for hot, dusty environments, and said future designs should include more sophisticated controls.

For its efforts this year, the team won two prizes at the school’s annual Engineering Design Showcase, the Willy Revolution Award for Outstanding Innovation and the best interdisciplinary engineering design award. But the real payoff would be seeing the device further developed and deployed around the world. 

“If they can get it working fully in that kind of environment, this will be saving lives,” Nasteff said.