Aaliyah was killed in a plane crash Saturday in the Bahamas.
The 22-year-old singer and actress, born Aaliyah Haughton, was one of nine people aboard a twin-engine plane that crashed seconds after taking off from the Bahamas, according to Grand Bahama police superintendent Basil Rahming. All nine died.
Aaliyah was in the Bahamas shooting a video, Minister of Tourism Tommy Turnquest told the Associated Press.
She died instantly when the plane, a Cessna 402B, exploded on impact just 200 feet beyond the end of a runway at Marsh Harbour International Airport on Abaco Island at 6:45 p.m., Rahming said. The craft, which was bound for Opa-Locka Airport, just northwest of Miami, apparently suffered engine failure upon liftoff, he said.
Others killed in the accident included Aaliyah makeup artist Eric Foreman, 29, and Virgin Records representative Douglas Kratz, 28,
according to Rahming. Two other women and three other men, including the pilot, died in the crash; another male passenger died early Sunday morning in Nassau, where he was awaiting airlift to a Miami hospital, authorities said.
Aaliyah “was like one of my daughters, she was one of the sweetest girls in the world,” producer Quincy Jones told the AP. “I loved her and respected her and I am absolutely devastated.” (For more reaction, see “Aaliyah Mourned As Artist Who Had ‘Limitless Potential.’” )
“We find it devastating and most unfortunate that after having this world-famous star Aaliyah and her crew select the Bahamas as their choice location for her latest video, the project has climaxed on such a tragic note,” tourism minister Turnquest told the news service.
In July, Aaliyah released her self-titled third album, which found her moving away from club beats toward more introspective, midtempo numbers (see “Aaliyah Makes Love And War On New Album” ). The album features the single “We Need a Resolution,” one of three songs she recorded with producer and frequent collaborator Timbaland.
The singer, who co-starred with martial artist Jet Li in the 2000 action flick “Romeo Must Die,” plays the title role in the film adaptation of the Anne Rice novel “Queen of the Damned” and was cast in “The Matrix 2,” both due in 2002 (see “Aaliyah Finishes New Album During Break From Movies” ).
She released her first album, Age Ain’t Nothing but a Number, in 1994.
The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board and the Civil Aviation Department of the Bahamas will jointly investigate the crash, Rahming said.
For a feature interview with Aaliyah, check out “Aaliyah: Been A Long Time.”
To see how fans are reacting to the news, and to share your own thoughts, visit You Tell Us.
Tune in Tuesday night at 5 p.m. ET for “The Life of Aaliyah,” an MTV News Now special report which will air live immediately following “TRL.”
(This story was updated at 7:15 p.m. ET Sunday, August 26, 2001.)