Eminem's estranged father, Marshall Bruce Mathers Jr., has died at 67 due to a heart attack.
The rapper had no relationship with his father, who married his mother when she was 15 and left the family not long after Eminem (whose legal name is Marshall Bruce Mathers III) was born. As a teenager, Eminem wrote letters to the dad he never met, all of which came back "return to sender," according to a 1999 Rolling Stone cover story.
The elder Marshall Mathers moved from Missouri to California upon leaving his wife and baby in the 1970s, but he reportedly died at his home near Ft. Wayne, Indiana. The area is about a three-hour drive from the Michigan region where Eminem currently resides.
Eminem's mother, Debbie, said in 2008 that her ex was "abusive" and "hard-drinking."
Eminem through the years
Eminem through the years
Rap artist Eminem. (Photo by Marion Curtis/DMI/The LIFE Picture Collection via Getty Images/Getty Images)
White American rapper Eminem, winner of the Best Hip Hop act award, makes his acceptance speech at the 1999 MTV Europe Music Awards. (Photo by Chris Bacon - PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)
UNSPECIFIED - JANUARY 01: Photo of EMINEM (Photo by Nigel Crane/Redferns)
NEW YORK CITY - SEPTEMBER 9: Rapper Eminem attends the 16th Annual MTV Video Music Awards on September 9, 1999 at the Metropolitan Opera House, Lincoln Center in New York City. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD - AUGUST 18: Rapper Eminem attends the Source Hip-Hop Music Awards on August 18, 1999 at the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE -- Episode 1 -- Pictured: Musical guest Eminem performs on October 7, 2000 -- (Photo by: Dana Edelson/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
378549 01: Hip Hop Artist Eminem (aka Marshall Mathers III) enters the courtroom of Judge Norris Langford in Oakland County Circuit Court in Pontiac, Michigan September 18, 2000. Eminem was accused of pointing a gun at someone. (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Liaison)
(EXCLUSIVE, Premium Rates Apply) Eminem at the 27th Annual American Music Awards (Photo by Barry King/WireImage)
Eminem Performing At The Reading Festival, Britain - 27 Aug 2001, Eminem (Photo by Brian Rasic/Getty Images)
Eminem during MTV European Music Awards 2002 MTV European Music Awards 2002 at Palau Sant Jordi in Barcelona, Spain. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc)
Eminem during 2003 MTV Video Music Awards - Backstage and Audience at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, New York, United States. (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc)
Madonna and Eminem during 2003 MTV Video Music Awards - Show at Radio City Music Hall in New York City, New York, United States. ***Exclusive*** (Photo by Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)
Eminem during the 11th annual MTV Europe Awards 2004 at the Tor di Valle in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Anthony Harvey - PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)
Eminem and 50 Cent at the MTV Studios - Times Square in New York City, New York (Photo by James Devaney/WireImage)
NEW ORLEANS - OCTOBER 30: Eminem performs at the 2009 Voodoo Experience at City Park on October 30, 2009 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Barry Brecheisen/WireImage)
Eminem performs as part of the 2010 Epicenter Music Festival at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. (Photo by Tim Mosenfelder/Corbis via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 05: Eminem speaks onstage at WSJ. Magazine 2014 Innovator Awards at Museum of Modern Art on November 5, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images)
AUSTIN, TX – OCTOBER 11: Eminem performs in concert during the Austin City Limits Music Festival at Zilker Park on October 11, 2014 in Austin, Texas. (Photo by Gary Miller/FilmMagic)
FILE - In this July 20, 2015, file photo, Rapper Eminem attends the premiere of "Southpaw" in New York. In a tweet Thursday, Dec. 14, 2017, Eminem said is hosting a promotional event Friday in Detroit in the style of a pop-up restaurant with a menu featuring "mom's spaghetti." The event is to promote his new album, "Revival." (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)
Eminem performs at the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival on Saturday, June 9, 2018, in Manchester, Tenn. (Photo by Amy Harris/Invision/AP)
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Eminem, 46, frequently wrote about his dad in his early rap lyrics. On his 2002 album "The Eminem Show," he wrote of his father, "I wonder if he even kissed me goodbye / No I don't / On second thought I just f--king wished he would die."
In 2001, as he ascended to superstardom, his dad told The Mirror, "'I'm not interested in his money. I just want to talk to him. I want him to know that I'm here for him if he lets me back into his life."
It's currently unknown whether Eminem ever came face-to-face with his father in more recent years.
Eminem himself is a father of three. He and his high school sweetheart, Kim, with whom he had an on-and-off relationship, share a daughter born in 1995. He also has custody of Kim's daughter from another relationship, as well as custody of Kim's twin sister's daughter.