The family of 9-year-old Ezra Blount, the youngest victim in the Astroworld tragedy, will not accept Travis Scott’s offer to cover their funeral expenses.
Ezra Blount was on his dad’s shoulders at Travis Scott’s fatal Astroworld Festival in Houston on November 5th when the two were caught in the deadly crowd surge that killed 10 people and left hundreds injured.
“Everyone was pushing. It was so tight with no exits. His dad couldn’t breathe at all and passed out. We don’t really know what happened to Ezra after that,” grandmother Tericia Blount told Rolling Stone.
After Ezra was separated from his father, he was found at a nearby hospital listed as a John Doe. He stayed in a medically induced coma for days and died of irreversible organ failure on November 14th.
Travis Scott reportedly volunteered to pay the funeral expenses on November 24th, the day after Blount was buried. Scott’s lawyer, Daniel Petrocelli, wrote that Scott was “devastated” and “committed to doing his part to help the families who have suffered.”
The Blount family declined Scott’s offer to cover the funeral expenses in a letter put forward by lawyer Bob Hilliard.
“Your client’s offer is declined. I have no doubt Mr. Scott feels remorse. His journey ahead will be painful. He must face and hopefully see that he bears some of the responsibility for this tragedy,” Hilliard wrote.
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Hilliard wrote that Scott “must respect” that his own “devastation” does not match that of Ezra’s family, which he likened to “a faucet of unimaginable pain that has no off handle.”
“There may be, and I hope there is, redemption and growth for him on the other side of what this painful process will be — and perhaps one day, once time allows some healing for the victims and acceptance of responsibility by Mr. Scott and others, Treston and Mr. Scott might meet, as there is also healing in that,” Hilliard wrote.
“To lose a child in the manner Treston lost Ezra compounds the pain,” he wrote. “As a parent, Treston cannot help but agonize over the terrible idea that Ezra’s last minutes were filled with terror, suffering, suffocation and worst of all surrounded by strangers, his dad unconscious underneath the uncontrolled crowd.”
Ezra’s family has filed a gross negligence lawsuit against Scott, Cactus Jack Records, festival promoter Live Nation, and promoter ScoreMore Management claiming they “egregiously failed in their duty to protect the health, safety, and lives” of attendees. Dozens of other lawsuits have been filed against those involved with Astroworld.
Petrocelli, a high-profile lawyer who previously represented Fred Goldman at the wrongful death trial that found O.J. Simpson civilly liable for the deaths of Ron Goldman and Nicole Brown Simpson, wrote that the acceptance of Scott’s offer would “have no effect” on the lawsuit filed by Ezra’s dad, Treston Blount.
Speaking to Rolling Stone, Hilliard said Scott’s team previously reached out to his co-counsel Ben Crump regarding setting up an in-person meeting. “We were pretty firm. With all due respect, no. This isn’t a photo-op story here. This is a ‘who’s responsible and why’ type of investigation. And he’s on the short list,” Hilliard said.