Todd Edwin Jr., 27, was a baby when his mother was killed. He often rapped about the void it created in his life.
"The deepest line he ever could have written was, 'Since a kid I've been cold / because my innocence was stole,'" said Kirby Redmond, who called Edwin his closest friend.
Edwin, like his mother, was killed at a young age.
His Nissan struck a Jeep Monday on Ward Parkway at 88th Terrace and overturned at least once before striking a tree.
The car was engulfed by flames, Kansas City police said, and bystanders who tried to pull Edwin from the conflagration were beaten back by the heat.
The driver of the Jeep was uninjured. Witnesses told police they observed the Nissan traveling at a high rate of speed. Edwin wasn't wearing a seat belt, according to police.
Edwin was memorialized by loved ones after his death, both online and in interviews with The Star. They remembered him for his generosity and success as a musician.
His rise came despite the hardship of losing his mother, Redmond said. Once, Redmond asked to connect to Edwin's WiFi, and he learned Edwin's late mother's name was the pass code.
"I asked him if every pass code was his mama's name," Redmond said. "He was like, 'If you never met your mom, she'd be all your pass codes, too.'"
Edwin's mother was killed in a Kansas City shooting that was never solved, Redmond said.
Edwin was raised in Kansas City by his father, Todd Edwin Sr., and his grandparents. He attended Paseo High School.
Quincie Edwin said her cousin was the first to arrive at family gatherings and the last to leave.
"He was one of a kind; such a great spirit to be around," she said.
Only last week, Edwin presented his 16-year-old sister with a gift: a new car that he planned to help her drive back to Georgia after she spent time visiting him in Kansas City.
In his song, "Moneybagg," he rapped:
"You wouldn’t believe how I started out / growing up hungry, money I’m craving / learnt the hard way but I made it out."
Edwin supported himself solely with his music, Redmond said. Highlights in his career included opening for Kevin Gates at the Uptown Theater and Boosie Badazz at the Midland.
One of his music videos was picked up by WorldStarHipHop and garnered nearly 7 million views.
He was known as Yung Theory and performed in the group Ca$hGang alongside Louie D. He wrote his own lyrics and posted many of his songs to SoundCloud.
Edwin recorded tracks in Los Angeles, Atlanta and here in Kansas City.
"I’m lost," Redmond said. "That was my only genuine friend, who would do for me what I would do for him. I don’t have him anymore."
Edwin's funeral is scheduled for 11 a.m. Saturday at the St. Louis Parish, 5930 Swope Parkway. His family is asking that photos of Edwin be emailed to TheLifeOfYungTheory@gmail.com.