Justin Bieber has revealed he and others in his team are mourning Thomas Ayad, who was murdered during the terrorist attacks in Paris last Friday.
In a public statement posted to his Twitter account on Monday, Justin tributed his friend Thomas, 34, and said he’d been part of his team for years and that he wished he had more time to thank him for his work.
It was later confirmed by Pascal Négre, CEO of Universal Music France, that Thomas was an international product manager for Mercury Records, which is part of Universal Music Group, the label where Bieber is signed. Thomas was in the Le Bataclan theater for the Eagles of Death Metal show when gunmen opened fire on patrons.
Négre told Billboard that three employees were killed during the attacks and the company is currently “in mourning.”
Justin’s tribute began, “Still thinking about Paris and my friend Thomas that we lost in the tragedy. He was part of the team for years, and I wish I would’ve had more time to thank him.”
Poignantly, the singer added, “Make sure to appreciate people while you have them. Thanks Thomas for everything you did for me.” The 21-year-old continued, “You are appreciated and missed. Thoughts and prayers are with your family & friends.” He ended with the hashtag, “#PrayForParis.”
In a cover message attached to his note, Justin wrote, “RIP Thomas #PrayForParis.”
— Justin Bieber (@justinbieber) November 17, 2015
At least 129 people were slain during violent attacks on November 13 at different sites in Paris. France’s government went on to declare a national state of emergency, and the world learned of the horror in news reports.
As the Inquisitr previously reported, the singer led thousands of fans in prayer at the Staples Center during a special concert hours after the attacks on Friday night.
The prayer took place during the second of the pop star’s three Staples Center “An Evening with Justin Bieber” shows in Los Angeles on Friday, November 13. The shows marked the same-day release of his new album, Purpose.
Shortly after the afternoon concert, tweets about the events in Paris and Japan were shared on Bieber’s Twitter page. He (or whoever else has access to Bieber’s social media accounts), wrote the following.
Had a great first show but just heard about what happened in Paris. Thoughts and prayers with everyone #PrayForParis
— Justin Bieber (@justinbieber) November 14, 2015
Justin also tweeted hashtags for “Japan and France”.
At the second Staples Center show (6 p.m.), when Bieber, his longtime pal and guide Pastor Judah Smith, and Los Angeles KIIS FM host JoJo Wright took to the stage to hold a Q&A, Smith and Bieber brought the 18,000-strong audience together in prayer.
Pastor Smith spoke to the fans first, saying Justin’s “entire project is about people finding purpose even in the midst of their pain,” before asking fans to join them in prayer for “families in France and prayers in Japan.”
Bieber then prayed aloud, saying, “God, we just thank you so much. Through all the pain, through all the darkness, God, you still shine your light, God.”
The singer went on, “Help us to just focus on you through it all and not be distracted, God.”
Justin also acknowledged that when “things are out of our control,” it can be hard to trust.
This was absolutely beautiful. I love Justin and Judah. pic.twitter.com/MTzX8Xv1c0
— Nina (@gianinajb) November 14, 2015
He continued, “We just pray for their families and pray for restoration and just peace. I know…it must be so tough for them — I couldn’t even imagine. But, God, we just, we thank you and we just trust you. Even though it’s hard, and it’s hard for the families, we just trust you. In your name we pray, amen.”
The day after (November 14), while accepting the first-ever Hall of Fame award at Nickelodeon’s 2015 Halo Awards, Bieber asked the audience to mark a moment of silence for recent terrible events around the world.
“There’s been some sad things happening in the world right now, and I think that we should all honour that and just take one moment of silence for that, if you guys could,” he said, alluding to the terrorist attacks in Paris and victims of violence or disasters elsewhere.
Bieber was booked to appear on the Today show for an interview on Monday. However, yesterday Gossip Cop reported yesterday that the chat was postponed in light of NBC’s continuing intensive coverage of crisis in Paris.
— HALSEY (@halsey) November 17, 2015
The Biebs is set to perform on the Today show on Wednesday. Tonight, he returns to Jimmy Fallon’s The Tonight Show.
[Images via Instagram]