Obe Noir, a Houston activist, community leader and rapper, has died at the age of 31 following a shooting on Monday morning, according to the Houston Police Department.
The City of Houston and the police department released a statement about the beloved local leader, describing what happened to Noir, whose real name is Xavier Roberson.
"Witnesses saw Mr. Roberson running down the street after hearing gunfire in the distance. A vehicle drove around the block as if chasing Roberson and then stopped at the above address," said Houston Police Department Homicide Division Sergeant T. Hollohazy and Detective B. Evans.
"Two unknown males exited the vehicle and fired shots at Roberson, who collapsed in the street. The suspects then fled in the vehicle along Tuam Street before turning onto San Jacinto Street," the two officers said in a statement.
Roberson died at the scene.
He came from the same housing project as George Floyd and was well known in the Third Ward and East Texas area for his work with community businesses.
Multiple rappers, including Trae The Truth, have released statements condemning his death and honoring his legacy.
"Damn ….. Just lost My Niece Lyric Days ago , Now I just got the call bout you Zay…. U aint Deserve The way they done You…. ???? Rest Easy King," Trae The Truth wrote on Instagram.
The Houston Chronicle also noted that he was widely adored in Portugal for his role in bringing a championship to Portuguese basketball club Titanes de Barranquilla. He led the team to a championship in 2018 and was named MVP after being lauded for his leadership on and off the court.
"This can not be real. Not you, ???? WTF! This can't be happening, not to you lil brother. ???????????????????????? Zay Da Brickboy," rapper Cal Wayne wrote on Instagram.
“That was my protégé, like my son. He was my heart. It’s devastating because honestly, I always felt like he was better than me, and he didn’t realize,” Wayne later told the Houston Chronicle, noting that he grew up with Roberson.
As an athlete in Houston, he became close with stars like Dez Bryant, who posted tributes to the rapper on his social media pages. While life troubles stymied his efforts to play high-level college basketball, he ended up playing across the world in countries like Mexico, Argentina and Germany.
Roberson leaves behind a young daughter.