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Flo Rida Reveals Sister’s Death Motivated Him to Succeed

Flo Rida is known for his positive, feel-good songs and attitude, which can bring a smile to just about anyone’s face to begin with. But when you learn everything the former honor student went through to achieve his success, it’s even more moving.

Flo was always good in school, even though he knew deep down that academics weren’t where his heart or destiny were. “I recall being in 12th grade, and we had like a month left in school, and I was like, ‘What am I going to do with myself?’” he told MTV in ‘How I Made It.’ “I stayed in nothing but honor classes, but I always envisioned myself becoming a superstar. I didn’t want to work a 9-5,” he said. “9-5s take away from what I’m doing. It was never, never in my mind to do anything else, other than just give my all to the music.”

Still, Flo went to college in Las Vegas briefly anyway, because despite his drive, not everyone is lucky enough to make it big as an MC, and he was smart enough to know that. One of his older sisters helped him get into school, but he didn’t stay long. “I recall going to UNLV for like a month, because of the fact that music stayed on my mind. I would go to different studios, I would look in the Yellow Pages and call up different record companies, tell them I wanted to bring a demo.”

We all know how that turned out, seeing as his music gets stuck in our heads every single day — but it hasn’t always been sunshine for the Sunshine State rapper. In fact, the ‘I Cry’ MC went through a true tragedy. “I stayed out in La Vegas about two years, and during that time, I had a sister down in Miami, she was dealing with bronchitis,” Flo confessed. “I recall her telling me ‘Come home, I want to see you!’ And I didn’t let nothing come between me and my music, I mean, absolutely nothing … One day, my boy called me up and was like ‘Man, your sister passed away,’” he revealed. “And when that happened, it really took me to a whole other level, like…” Flo’s voice breaks and he begins to cry, wiping tears from behind his ever-present shades. “Her name was Julia, and I was very close to her, and I told myself that I was going to do this for my sister.”

As heartbreaking as that story is, it’s heartwarming to know that Flo dedicates his art to his sister’s memory and that he can maintain such a sunny outlook despite such sad circumstances.

Next: Learn More About Flo Rida's Life!

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