Family Defends Decision To Display Corpse In Nightclub

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Leena Nasir Entertainment Reporter
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Family members are defending their decision to prop up and display a young rapper’s corpse in a Washington, D.C. nightclub April 3 while loved ones danced around him.

Bliss Nightclub hosted the celebration, and the video of the embalmed, upright corpse quickly made its rounds on social media, according to TMZ. Twenty-four-year-old rapper Markelle Morrow, known by the stage name “Goonew,” was shot and killed March 18, the outlet noted. His mother and sister stood by their choice to display his body during a celebration of his life, and said it was what he would have wanted.

The slain rapper’s mother, Patrice, and his sister, Ariana Morrow, clarified to fans in an exclusive interview with TMZ that all aspects of this memorial were planned with Goonew’s personality and preferences in mind.

“My mom made it very clear, she said ‘I don’t want it to be a funeral it’s his last show… I don’t want nobody to ever look down on my son,'” Ariana said. The decision was then made to prop up Goonew’s embalmed body and present him to his loved ones in an authentic way, according to TMZ. (RELATED: Police Pull Baby And Three Others From Sinking Car)

According to the family, the funeral home assisted them in creating their club-themed memorial and were the ones that suggested a crown be placed atop Goonew’s head as a nod to the way fans used to reference the artist as “The King Of Maryland,” reported TMZ. Patrice and Ariana went on to explain they had dressed Goonew in clothing he wore regularly, and commented on the fact that dressing his body in a traditional suit would have been “fake and phony.” The family stated that Goonew wasn’t fond of attending church, so a church service didn’t resonate with them as being an appropriate setting for the event, reported TMZ.

Goonew was fatally wounded during a shooting March 18 in Prince George’s County, in what the family believes to have been an armed robbery, said TMZ.

A horse-drawn carriage later took Goonew’s body through his neighborhood and to his final resting place, said TMZ.

“He was the life of the party, so that’s why I sent him home that way, having a party,” the rapper’s mother said, according to TMZ.