A Prince fan’s GoFundMe page has sparked controversy, and quite a few unfavorable comments, after money was raised to help the distraught fan attend the artist’s funeral.
On April 21, 2016, Prince Rogers Nelson was pronounced dead, after the Carver County Sheriff’s Office responded to a 911 call stating that Prince was unresponsive. At 10:07 a.m., Prince was pronounced dead. The news spread quickly across social media networking sites as well as mainstream media news. Fans responded with grief and sorrow, and one fan started a GoFundMe page in hopes of attending Prince’s funeral.
Meeka Late posted two photos side-by-side, showing a close-up of her face while she cried and a shirtless photo of Prince. She requested money to attend his funeral, and quickly reached more than $1,500 dollars, which is more than halfway to her goal of $3,000. At the time of this writing, Meeka Late had raised $1,560. The only problem is that on April 23, 2016, Prince was cremated and a private funeral was held only for family and close friends. There is no funeral service for Meeka Late to attend.
So, I wonder how stupid the people who donated to that gofundme to help ol girl get to a funeral that we knew… https://t.co/Iio3rrJDlw
— Shakir Rashaan (@ShakirRashaan) April 24, 2016
“News of Prince’s death shocked many around the nation, but may have especially hit his Minnesota fans the hardest.
“Meeka Late originally posted the following message on GoFundMe, explaining why she was starting the page and what she intended to do with the money.
” ‘Y’all know I love me some Prince… I just need y’all to help get me to his funeral. Lord I broke down in Sam’s Club… y’all I was on the floor SangN ‘Purple Rain’… This man was supposed to sAng ‘Darling Nikki’ at my wedding… Lord help me make it through this!
“Any donation will help.
At first, other fans responded favorably and the cash began flowing. Some left supportive messages on the GoFundMe page after they made their donations. Things quickly changed, however, after it was learned that Prince had been cremated, and his cremains were going to a secret place.
— The Root (@TheRoot) April 22, 2016
It wasn’t long after word spread that a private funeral for family and friends was held, and that Prince’s body was cremated and his cremains located to a secret place, for people to become upset with Meeka Late. Some have stated that her GoFundMe page was a scam. However, she reiterated that she did not know there wouldn’t be a funeral.
Meeka Late updated her post after learning about the private funeral and stated what she intends to do with the money already raised.
“Yes There will be No funeral. However I will still be traveling to Minnesota to say farewell to my favorite artists at the Fan Memorial outside of his home.
“I am not trying to scam anyone I’m just a True Prince fan who thought of a creative way to make my dream come halfway true.
There are more than 2,600 comments on Meeka Late’s GoFundMe page, and you can see that as soon as she set up the page, many people felt that her request for money was inappropriate. Many of the comments lash out at Meeka Late, and the tone hasn’t changed any since learning that people gave her more than $1,000 to attend a funeral that she couldn’t go to in the first place. Others have expressed sentiments that Prince was a private person, and anyone who really knew his public persona would have realized that he wouldn’t have wanted a large, showy public funeral in the first place.
What do you think about Meeka Late’s GoFundMe page and the fact that she has raised more than half her goal?
[Photo by Meeka Late/GoFundMe]