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Eminem's Father Marshall Bruce Mathers Jr. Dead At 67 From Heart Attack

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Eminem's Father Marshall Bruce Mathers Jr. Dead At 67 From Heart Attack

Marshall Bruce Mathers Jr. was frequently the target of many of Eminem's rages on wax and now, he's passed away suddenly. How did Eminem's dad die?

Here’s what we know about the sudden death of the rap superstar’s biological father.

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1. He was estranged from his famous son.

According to Us Weekly, Eminem and his father were estranged for the rapper’s entire life. His mother, Debbie, married the elder Marshall in 1970, and they had Eminem two years later. However, shortly after Eminem was born, the elder Marshall abandoned the family and moved from Detroit to California. There, he remarried and had two more children — Michael and Sarah — and was, by their accounts, a better father to them than he was to Eminem.

“Eminem wrote and mailed a few letters to Bruce as a teenager, but they came back marked “return to sender.” In the same interview, the 15-time Grammy winner told the magazine that he heard his dad had been “trying to get in touch” with him once he became famous,” they wrote.

Eminem was estranged from his father. 

2. Marshall Bruce Mathers Jr. was the target of Eminem’s rage on his records.

According to Metro UK, Eminem never met his biological father, but he targeted a lot of his rage towards him on hit songs.

“Despite never meeting his father, Eminem, 46, rapped in songs such as My Name Is and Cleanin’ Out My Closet about the strained relationship he had with his dad. He rapped in Cleanin’ Out My Closet, referencing his own daughter Hailie: ‘My fa***t father must’ve had his panties up in a bunch ‘Cause he split, I wonder if he even kissed me goodbye. No, I don’t, on second thought, I just f**kin’ wished he would die. I look at Hailie, and I couldn’t picture leavin’ her side,” they wrote.

Eminem's father was the target of his rage on his records. 

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3. But according to Eminem’s father, it was his mother’s fault.

According to TMZ, who initially broke the story of Marshall Bruce Mathers Jr.’s death, the elder Marshall blamed Debbie — Eminem’s mother, who has also been the target of Eminem’s rage on wax in the past — for “keeping him away” from his son. (A dollar for every time we’ve heard that line…)

“In 2001, Bruce published a letter addressed to his son in a newspaper explaining his side of the story — that Eminem's mom kept him away. Still, Eminem apparently never got in contact with his father to reconcile,” they wrote.

Eminem's father tried to get in touch with him after he became famous. 

4. Marshall Bruce Mathers Jr. died of a heart attack at age 67.

According to MLive, Marshall Bruce Mathers Jr. died of a heart attack at age 67. He was surrounded by friends and family — a family which didn’t include Eminem — when he’d passed in Indiana.

Regardless of the circumstances, our thoughts are with Eminem and his family during this difficult time.

Eminem's father died of a heart attack in Indiana.

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Bernadette Giacomazzo is an editor, writer, and photographer whose work has appeared in People, Teen Vogue, Us Weekly, The Source, XXL, HipHopDX, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Post, and more. She is also the author of The Uprising series. For more information about Bernadette Giacomazzo, click here.