Juice Wrld‘s legacy lives on. The late rapper’s mother, Carmela Wallace, has donated instruments to the rapper’s childhood school Deer Creek Christian School in Chicago Heights, Illinois through the Live Free 999 Fund, which was founded in honor of him.
Organized by the fund with help from record labels Grade A and Interscope Geffen A&M, the donation has equipped the school’s band and orchestra, along with beginner instruments for students between pre-school and second grade.
Wallace said the rapper’s eighth-grade homeroom teacher Mrs. Lannaea Alexander “had a profound effect on my son’s life, and I have never forgotten her positive influence on him and the other students under her tutelage. I am so pleased to be able to support her work at Deer Creek by helping to make it possible for her students to pursue their interest in music education.”
Alexander, who is now the school’s principal, spoke highly of Juice’s impact and how appreciative they are for the donation.
“Jarad’s positivity and immense talent affected everyone who came into his presence,” she said. “His spirit can very much be felt in the heartbeat of our school’s mission and within the very walls and floors of the school building itself. We are immensely grateful to accept this gift from Carmela and Jarad which will enable us to offer a robust music education for our students at Deer Creek Christian School.”
The Live Free 999 Fund launched in April to support young people in their battles with addiction, anxiety and depression, after Juice WRLD passed away on December 8, 2019, due to an accidental overdose of codeine and oxycodone.
“Young people around the world were truly touched by Jarad’s music because he spoke to issues and situations in his music that resonated with them so deeply,” his mother said. “I was aware of his struggles with addiction, anxiety, and depression; we had many conversations about his challenges with these issues. I know he truly wanted to be free from the demons that tormented him.
She continued, “I made the decision upon his death that I was going to share his struggles with the world with the objective of helping others. It is my desire to help those who are hurting by providing access to education, prevention and treatment for opioid and other forms of drug addiction. It is my hope that Live Free 999 will help people just as Jarad’s music has and will continue to touch lives for years to come.”
In July, Wallace shared some throwback photos of Juice playing the guitar and keyboard, and reminisced on her son getting into music at a young age.
“I always found ways to allow Jarad to play music,” she wrote on Instagram. “I bought his first keyboard from a pawn shop for $99 so he could take lessons, he was six. We would also visit Guitar Center so he could play instruments. He took piano lessons initially and we later added guitar. Shout out to Muzicnet School of Music.”