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Street name unveiled in Castalia Heights to honor Memphis rapper Young Dolph

Published: Dec. 15, 2021 at 8:59 PM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - The City of Memphis unveiled an honorary street name to remember late rapper Young Dolph Wednesday.

The area of Dunn near Airways and Hayes is now referred to as Adolph “Young Dolph” Thornton Jr.” Avenue in the Castalia Heights neighborhood where Young Dolph grew up.

Family and loved ones hope it’s a small way his legacy will live on forever.

“There is no one more deserving of a street name in their honor, especially in Castalia Heights -- his community -- than Adolph Thornton,” said the rapper’s aunt, Rita Myers.

Young Dolph’s family, friends, and fans gathered Wednesday before the street name unveiling to remember him not just as a rapper or superstar, but a father, son, and philanthropist.

“Adolph brought resources and revenue to Memphis. When he did his massive videos, they were done in Castalia. They were done in South Memphis. He brought revenue to this city,” Myers said.

Young Dolph was also remembered for his giving heart.

He always hosted giveaways in the community and visited front-line workers during the pandemic to pay his respects.

His life partner, Mia Jerdine, said he was incredibly caring and a great father to his children.

“I’m grateful that the world can see him for who he truly is. Not the persona that most people saw him for being , but for who he truly is,” Jerdine said.

Memphis City Council approved an honorary renaming of Dunn between Airways and Hayes last week near where the 36-year-old artist grew up and where he ultimately lost his life.

Councilman JB Smiley said he’s excited to pay tribute to a man who embodies the spirit of Memphis.

“We shouldn’t be coming here celebrating Young Dolph in his passing. We should be here celebrating him as he lived today,” Smiley said.

Many said they will work to make sure his legacy stays alive and the sign that now sits on Dunn Avenue is a reminder of that.

“I really hope that this can be a staple in the community and just remind people that violence isn’t the way, that black men do deserve to grow old just as Adolph deserved to grow old,” Jerdine said.

Thursday, there will be a public memorial ceremony at FedExForum to honor Young Dolph.

A spokesperson familiar with the event confirms it is set to begin at noon until 2 p.m.

Doors will open at 11 a.m.

Memphis police said there will be closures on B.B. King Boulevard between MLK and Beale Street along with 4th Street between MLK and Beale Street during the ceremony.

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