Former NBA player Rasual Butler and R&B singer Leah LaBelle were killed in a single-vehicle crash Studio City, Los Angeles during the middle of the night, the L.A. County coroner’s office confirmed to ESPN.
The 6-foot-7, Butler was drafted in 2002 by the Miami Heat. He first impressed scouts while playing college ball at La Salle University in Philadelphia.
Butler, averaged 7.5 points and 2.4 rebounds per game, played 13 seasons in the NBA for eight teams. He finished his career with the San Antonio Spurs.
LaBelle, 31, meanwhile, had a career as an R&B singer, finding her start on the third season of American Idol in 2003.
The R&B singer was a finalist in Season 3 of “American Idol” in 2004. The couple was pronounced dead at the scene at 2:35 a.m. after his Range Rover struck parking meters and a wall and rolled into a parking lot, the coroner’s office said.
Past and Present friends, organizations, and teammates took to social media to honor Butler and LaBelle’s lives.
Damn this one hurts! RIP Rasual Butler & his wife Leah. Sounds so cliche, but Rasual was really one of the good ones!!
— Jamal Crawford (@JCrossover) January 31, 2018
Saddened by the news and the loss of Rasual Butler and his wife Leah. Talk about a great dude and family man. I know he had many stops during his 13 year NBA journey, but he was beloved becasue of his work ethic in Indiana. New guardian Angels..
— Reggie Miller (@ReggieMillerTNT) January 31, 2018
We are deeply saddened at the passing of former Toronto Raptor Rasual Butler. Our thoughts are with his family at this difficult time. pic.twitter.com/zoEzcVBHaW
— Toronto Raptors (@Raptors) January 31, 2018
— NBA (@NBA) February 1, 2018