Though he was only 44 years old, a medical examiner has concluded that Heavy D’s death last month was a result of natural causes. TMZ reported that Heavy, born Dwight Myers, died from a pulmonary embolism caused by deep vein thrombosis.
Pulmonary embolism is usually caused by a blood clot formed in the leg that eventually travels up to the lung, stopping blood flow. In most cases, the clots formed aren’t deadly, but officials from L.A. County Coroner’s Office also told TMZ that the rapper suffered from heart disease and that may have been a contributing factor to his death as well.
According to WebMD, common symptoms associated with pulmonary embolism are sudden shortness of breath, sharp chest pains, lightheadedness and fainting. Police reported that on November 8 they arrived at Heavy D’s Beverly Hills home after a call was made to report an unconscious man. When the cops arrived, they found the rapper conscious, though he had difficulty breathing. The self-proclaimed Overweight Lover was then transported to Cedars Sinai Medical Center, where he was later pronounced dead.
TMZ also reported that a flight that Heavy took back from Europe after performing at a Michael Jackson tribute concert in Wales may have been a factor in his death as well. It is believed that the blood clots formed in Heavy’s legs due to his prolonged immobility on the long flight.
Heavy was laid to rest on November 18. The night before his funeral, his brother Floyd Myers spoke with MTV News about his brother’s health from his family’s home, apparently unaware of Heavy’s heart disease. “Heavy was in great shape,” Myers said. “You guys seen him at the BET Awards, and he just did the tribute to Michael Jackson; they flew him out to London to do that. Heav was in good shape, healthy, no heart problems. He constantly made sure that his health was in check.”
At the time, the initial autopsy report had come back inconclusive and Heavy’s family, friends and fans were still searching for answers. Still, rather than speculate, Heav’s brother remembered the positivity that the rapper exhibited in his life. “He loved family, and that’s who he was, but it wasn’t too much different from how he treated his friends and his fans,” he said. “He showed everybody love and affection, and we’re gonna miss that.”