Oct. 25 (UPI) — TobyMac remembers his son Truett McKeehan as a joyful and “magnetic” person.
The 55-year-old Christian rapper penned an emotional tribute Thursday on Instagram after McKeehan, his eldest child with wife Amanda McKeehan, died at age 21.
TobyMac, known as Toby McKeehan but born Kevin McKeehan, shared a slideshow of photos of McKeehan, including a father-son picture.
“Truett Foster Mckeehan had joy that took the room when he entered,” he captioned the post. “He was a magnetic son and brother and friend. If you met him, you knew him, you remembered him. His smile, his laugh, the encouragement he offered with words or even without. He had an untamable grand personality and dreams to match. And he hated being put in a box.”
TobyMac praised McKeehan, an aspiring performer, as a “true artist” who expressed himself through the music he wrote, recorded, produced and mixed himself.
“His first show was a week ago, and it was nothing short of electric. Everyone felt it, everyone knew it. He could’ve easily taken the easy route and put music out when he was 12, 14, 16, even 18, but he always said he wanted to live some life and have something to say before he did it,” TobyMac said. “He didn’t want to be a child star, he wanted to be a man with scars and a story to tell.”
TobyMac, who was on tour in Canada at the time of McKeehan’s death, said his last moment with his son was at McKeehan’s show last week in Franklin, Tenn.
“I was as proud as a ‘pop’ (as tru called me) could be. It was the culminating moment of a dream that he had since he was 12. It couldn’t have been sweeter,” the star shared.
“Our music, and what we say lyrically couldn’t be more different, but the outcome was much the same… offering a room full of people a few minutes of joy in a crazy world,” he said.
TobyMac’s rep confirmed Thursday that McKeehan died at home in the Nashville, Tenn., area this week. McKeehan’s cause of death has yet to be confirmed, although The Tennessean said the Nashville Fire Department responded to a report of a person in cardiac arrest at McKeehan’s home.
TobyMac and Amanda McKeehan are also parents to twins Moses and Marlee and sons Leo and Judah. TobyMac is known for the singles “Me Without You,” “Love Broke Thru” and “I Just Need You,” and collaborated with McKeehan on several songs.