By Brittany Campbell
February 1, 1997 was a dark day for a then 14-year-old Tim Black.
He said his final goodbye to his 38-year-old mother, Linda Turner, a mother of two. After battling the autoimmune disease lupus for seven years, she silently slipped away.
“I was shocked that she died. I mean my mom would go in and out of the hospital sporadically but I never dreamed that my mother would pass away,” said Black, 29, who lives in Ferndale.
Turner fit into the “but you don’t look sick” mold that many people struggling with autoimmune disease fall into. Although lupus was ravaging Turner’s body, Black says that her physical appearance didn’t change at all.
“The only thing that I remember is that she would bruise easily. Other than that she didn’t really show any emotion concerning the lupus. She was always calm and positive about things,” Black said.
“Lupus is America’s most common, least known about disease,” said rheumatologist Dr. Patricia Dhar, assistant professor of internal medicine at Wayne State University. “We all have an immune system. This protective mechanism is intended to defend you from millions of bacteria, microbes, viruses, toxins and parasites from invading your body. When the protective mechanism going awry and begins to attack itself, lupus occurs.”
Turner’s death was an especially crushing blow because at age 9, he lost his father. The loss of both parents at such a young age left Black navigating life. His grandmother and aunts stepped in and provided the nurturing touch that both he and his sister needed.
As he acclimated himself to his new world without his parents, he held on to his mother’s last words, “stay out of trouble.”
With those words, Black created a life filled with optimism, a positive support system and music. With his lyrics, the father of three is keeping his mother’s spirit alive.
Earlier this year, he began hosting concerts to promote his projects and donate a portion of the proceeds to local lupus organizations.
On Friday, Oct. 12, he will host “The Blackout 2 Concert and Lupus Detroit Charity” Fundraiser to be held at the New Way Bar in Ferndale.
Black’s music is motivated by everyday life and he promises that listeners will experience a range of emotions with each song. His favorite song on his new album is “No Gimmicks.”
“It’s true hip hop and the lyrics are just raw. I want the audience to get to know me through my music and respect that it is real music,” he said.
He also wants his fans to know what he isn’t just about his music but also about making a difference.
“There needs to be more resources for people with lupus. I don’t want another man to lose their mother like he did. That's why I feel so strongly about supporting Lupus Detroit. They are about the support of individuals with lupus,” Black said.
- What: Time Is Money Entertainment & Grant Side Media Presents The Blackout 2 Concert and Lupus Detroit Charity Fundraiser
- When: 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. on October 12
- Where: New Way Bar - 23130 Woodward, Ferndale (3 blocks north
of Nine Mile)
- Cost: Tickets are priced at $5 and can be purchased at www.TimBlackDetroit.com. Prices will be higher at the door.
- What else: Sounds by DJ Drummer B; Live performance by Tim Black & D.Knox. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to Lupus Detroit.
Brittany Campbell submitted this article on behalf of Lupus Detroit.