Hip-Hop legend Heavy D was posthumously honored earlier this week, in his hometown of “Money Earnin’” Mount Vernon, New York.
An old run down park was transformed into a lush, green oasis for children and has been renamed Heavy D and The Boyz Playground.
The park was selected due to it’s connection to Heavy and Hip-Hop history and because it is where he filled his first video for “Money Earnin’ Mount Vernon.”
Prior to becoming Heavy D’s playground, the park was vacant.
Debris and other material was cleared, and a sprawling mural of Heavy D and The Boyz went up in just four weeks.
The mural features Heavy D’s last quote before he died: “Be Inspired.”
“This is the park we grew up in, I mean toddlers straight through our twenties, this is the park where it happened,” Heavy’s brother Floyd Myers told CNN.
Money for the park’s rehab was provided by a nonprofit agency called Kaboom, as well as grants from the New York Knicks.
Heavy D, born Dwight Arrington Myers, died suddenly on November 8.
The rapper had a blood clot in his lung and heart disease, which resulted in a pulmonary embolism.
Heavy was extremely pivotal in helping introduce Hip-Hop to a mainstream audience.
He launched his career in 1987 as the leader of Heavy D. and The Boyz, which featured members DJ Eddie F, G-Wiz and the late Troy “Trouble T-Roy” Dixon.
Heavy D and The Boyz were the first artists on Uptown Records, which was headed up by Andre Harrell. The group powered the label’s early success with songs like “Mr. Big Stuff,” and “The Overweight Lover’s in the House.”
By 1991, Heavy D. crossed over to the mainstream by recording the theme music for “In Living Color,” in addition to landing hit songs on the Pop charts.
Heavy was also instrumental in helping a young executive named Sean “Puffy” Combs, secure an internship at Uptown Records.
Combs’ internship ultimately led to the creation of Bad Boy Entertainment, where Hev was also an artist, signed to a unique deal that granted him 100% of the profits of his recordings under the deal.