AUSTIN, Texas — Austin artist Hella Sketchy, real name Jacob Tyler Thureson, died of an apparent overdose on June 27 at age 18.

On Thursday, his father, filmmaker Erik Thureson, posted an emotional tribute to Twitter, urging for more conversation around the opioid epidemic and mental health.

“You are not supposed to go before your father or grandfather,” he wrote. “That’s not supposed to happen. That’s not how this works.”

The young artist came to fame via Soundcloud and YouTube and recently signed to APG/Atlantic Records.

His father said Jacob was found unresponsive on June 13 after an apparent overdose.

“He was revived and brought to the ER where he’s been in a coma for 14 days,” he wrote. “Never in a million years would I have imagined that it would end like this.”

The rapper and R&B artist was open about his drug use and struggles with addiction, calling himself a “sober drug addict” on Twitter just days before his reported overdose.

His mother, Judy Salgado Thureson, opened up about her son’s death in a heartbreaking post on Facebook.

“I’m so happy that not a day went by without telling my son I loved him,” she wrote on the Get Inspired Movement page.

“Today is no different. I’m grateful for today, to be by his side, to give him kisses, and to hold his hand. I love you Jacob. You are so deeply loved by so many people all around the world.”

His father hopes his son’s death shines light on the opioid epidemic.

“The conversation regarding drugs, depression, mental illness, social media, needs to be happening more openly without judgement and stigma.”

A Gofundme account has been set up in his honor, to help raise money to cover funeral costs and medical expenses.


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