Can we please have a moment of silence . . .
For Sean Levert, the youngest son of O'Jays frontman Eddie Levert, who died Sunday night (March 30) in Cleveland of unknown causes.
According to officials at the Cuyahoga County Jail, the 39-year-old singer was serving a week into his 22-month jail sentence for failure to pay $85,000 in child support payments when he suddenly became ill. Sean was immediately taken to Lutheran Hospital where he later died at 11:57 p.m. ET Sunday. The cause of death has yet to be determined pending an autopsy by the Cleveland medical examiner.
In a statement issued Monday, the Levert family said:
"There are no words that can express what we are feeling today. There is no song that can capture the loss that we have in our hearts. But we are humbly overwhelmed by the generous outpouring of love, condolences and support from the many friends, fans and admirers of our son Sean. At this very difficult time, we thank you for your prayers and hope you will understand our need for privacy."
This was the second tragedy the Levert family had to suffer. On Nov. 10, 2006, older brother Gerald Levert passed away from an accidental overdose of prescription and over-the-counter medications.
Sean, along with Gerald and Marc Gordon, was the co-founder of the '80s R&B group Levert. The trio garnered a string of top five hit singles including "Casanova," "Just Coolin'" and "(Pop, Pop, Pop, Pop) Goes My Mind." Recently, Sean and Marc announced that they have reformed the group and were recording songs for a new album.
Sean often played second fiddle to his older brother, which, according to the family's longtime musical director Edwin "Tony" Nicholas, he didn't mind at all. "He was willing to let Gerald have that limelight," he said. "They got along very, very well. They were very close." And like his older brother, Sean tried to pursue a solo career, as well. In 1995, he released his debut LP The Other Side, which failed to match the commercial success achieved by Levert and Gerald. "[Sean] was always striving to make a name for himself," said his cousin Andy Gibson. "It's always tough . . . to come behind two guys [Eddie and Gerald] who made a pretty big dent."
Funeral arrangements are pending.
Please keep the Levert family in your prayers.
Rest in Power, Sean.
Sean Levert -- "Same One" (video)