Rapper Biz Markie — most famous for his iconic hit “Just a Friend” — has died after
aseries of complications from diabetes that he’s been fighting for more than a year …
A family source tells us Biz passed away in a Baltimore hospital at 6:25 PM Friday night.
We’re told his wife, Tara Hall, held his hand as he took his last breath … and the nursing
staff was there to support his family, telling them how strong he was through his fight.
A rep for Biz tells us, “We are grateful for the many calls and prayers of support that we
have received during this difficult time. Biz created a legacy of artistry that will forever
be celebrated by his industry peers and his beloved fans whose lives he was able to touch
through music, spanning over 35 years. He leaves behind a wife, many family members
and close friends who will miss his vibrant personality, constant jokes and frequent
Biz was hospitalized last summer for an ailment his rep told us was
related to his Type II Diabetes. At the time, the rep said, “He is receiving the best care
from an amazing team of medical professionals and we remain positive about the
However, his condition remained somewhat of a mystery until April when Big Daddy
Kane made an appearance on The Breakfast Club, telling the show’s hosts Biz was doing
better, and in a physical rehab facility.
Throughout his hospital stay, rumors swirled Biz was in a coma, but our source says that
was never the case.