Coronji Calhoun Sr., the actor who played Halle Berry's son Tyrell Musgrove in the 2001 film Monster's Ball, has died. He was 30.
In a GoFundMe page to help "give Coronji a sacred celebration of life," the actor's mother, Theresa C. Bailey, said her son died on Oct. 13. She told CBS affiliate WWL-TV that his death was due to congestive heart failure and lung problems.
News of Calhoun's passing first surfaced last month on Instagram, with followers paying tribute to him in the comments section of one of his final posts.
Both Berry and Monster's Ball producer Lee Daniels appeared to contribute to the GoFundMe, with donations of $3,394 each.
"We are blown away by the outpouring of love the community and Coronji's adopted family has shown during our process of grief," Bailey wrote in a GoFundMe update on Wednesday. "As we close this chapter, we ask that in your remembrance of him, you remember to love your neighbor as yourself, because that is what Coronji did for his entire community."
Calhoun's sole acting credit was Monster's Ball, in which he played the put-upon son of Berry's lead character Leticia Musgrove. Calhoun was cast in the role after an open casting call in Louisiana, according to the SF Gate.
The film follows Leticia as she endures the execution of her death row inmate husband (Sean 'Diddy' Combs), only to fall in love with the prison guard (Billy Bob Thornton) who flipped the switch. Leticia also loses her son Tyrell (Calhoun) after a horrific accident.
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Monster's Ball, which costarred Heath Ledger, earned Berry an Oscar for Best Actress. She made history for becoming the first woman of color to win in the lead category.
Prior to the 2002 Academy Awards, Berry reflected on how difficult it was to act abusive toward Calhoun in the film, whom her character berates for being extremely overweight.
"It was a lot harder than even the love scene because (Coronji) was really 10 [years old] and obese," Berry shared with the Gate at the time.
"I worried that I would somehow damage him emotionally, not just in doing the scene, but down the road. So I talked to him a lot and hugged and kissed him a lot. He said, 'You don't have to worry about what you say; it can't be as bad as how they treat me at school,' " Berry continued. "But I hear now he's the most popular kid in his school. So I guess (the movie) helped."
According to WWL-TV, Calhoun was one of six children, and is survived by a 10-year-old son and 13-year-old stepson.