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Family of 'Lil Tay' Announces Sudden Death of 14-Year-Old Influencer

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UPDATE, Aug. 15, 2023: ‘I’m Alive,’ said influencer Lil Tay, who claimed alarming false death announcement came from hackers. Read more here.

The 14-year-old Canadian-born influencer known as “Lil Tay” has died, her family announced on Wednesday.

A representative of the social media star, whose real name was Claire Hope, shared the news in a statement on her Instagram page.

“It is with a heavy heart that we share the devastating news of our beloved Claire’s sudden and tragic passing,” the statement read.

“We have no words to express the unbearable loss and indescribable pain,” it continued. “This outcome was entirely unexpected, and has left us all in shock.”

 

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A post shared by Lil Tay (@liltay)

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The statement also confirmed the death of Hope’s brother but did not provide any further details. The Daily Mail identified her brother as 21-year-old Jason Tian.

“During this time of immense sorrow, we kindly ask for privacy as we grieve this overwhelming loss, as the circumstances surrounding Claire and her brother’s passing are still under investigation,” the statement said.

“Claire will forever remain in our hearts, her absence leaving an irreplaceable void that will be felt by all who knew and loved her.”

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Lil Tay (@liltay)

The Daily Beast reported that Hope’s former manager, Henry Tsang, released a statement casting some doubt on whether Hope and her brother had actually died.

“I have been in communication with individuals who have an intimate understanding of the family’s situation,” Tsang said. “Given the complexities of the current circumstances, I am at a point where I cannot definitively confirm or dismiss the legitimacy of the statement issued by the family.”

The New York Post reported that Hope’s father, Chris Hope, declined to comment on the situation.

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“Lil Tay” was catapulted into the limelight at the age of 9 through a string of viral videos in which she showcased wealth and luxury cars. Critics raised concerns at the time regarding her age and the role of her family in her rise to fame.

After amassing over 3 million followers on Instagram, Hope disappeared from social media and has stayed out of the public eye for years.

Her most recent Instagram post was a 2018 homage to rapper XXXTentacion following his death.

In 2021, Hope’s brother Jason set up a GoFundMe for her, claiming her father was attempting to seize control of her money as well as physically abusing her. The fundraiser also alluded to her suffering from depression.

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