Several celebrities, athletes and fans took to Twitter to pay tribute to R&B singer Leah LaBelle and her husband, former NBA star Rasual Butler.
LaBelle and Butler passed away on Jan. 31 after getting into a single car accident in California. Police said Butler was speeding when he collided with a parking ticket machine and slammed into a wall, The Sun reported.
LaBelle was a former contestant on the third season of “American Idol” in 2004, according to Billboard. She competed with Jennifer Hudson and Fantasia before being signed to Epic Records in a joint deal between Pharrell Williams’ I Am Other record label and Jermaine Dupri’s So So Def Records.
The R&B singer saw some success in the Billboard charts. In 2012, LaBelle’s song “Sexify” reached the 89th spot on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart and peaked at No. 23 on the Adult R&B Songs airplay chart. Her song “Lolita” also reached the seventh spot on the Dance Club Songs chart.
Several celebrities took to social media to honor LaBelle’s memory.
“Your spirit was just as your voice; beautiful,” Pharrell wrote in an Instagram post. “Moments like these leave us with so many questions. What I don’t question is how much you loved God, how much you love your life partner and where you guys are now. Sing Sis, sing.”
“Leah. beautiful sister from another mister. You will NEVER EVER be forgotten,” tweeted singer JoJo, who once toured with LaBelle. “Your voice. Your spirit. Your light. Cannot comprehend what this loss means. Thinking about your unwavering faith in God brings me peace. I love you, forever angel.”
“This just doesn’t seem right even saying right now but Rest In Peace Baby Girl,” Fantasia wrote on her Instagram account. “I will never forget you. Idol Family Forever.”
Butler spent 13 years playing professional basketball in the NBA. He played for several teams, including the Chicago Bulls, the San Antonio Spurs, the Los Angeles Clippers and the Washington Wizards.
Several players and former NBA stars also took to social media to remember Butler and mourn his loss.
“Come on man. Damn. The world just lost a great dude,” wrote Dwayne Wade. “RIP Rasual ‘Bop’ Butler!”
“I’m terribly sorry to hear about the death of Rasual Butler and his wife,” added Isaiah Thomas. “Thoughts & Prayers go out [to] his family and everyone affected by this terrible accident!”
“Rest In Peace my brother,” wrote Kobe Bryant.
Butler recently took to Instagram to write about his only child, Raven:
My daughter is so [wave emoji]yyyy! Her Aura, spirit, style, creativity, intellect, passion and understanding for her age is a beautiful thing to watch as very proud father! She understands things about being solid many adults struggle with! I Love you with every single element of human anatomy that allows me to be here in the physical as your father, friend, partner and inspiration for everything driving me to be the ultimate best version of me.