Slain Pace Footballer's Mom: Jay-Z , Kanye "Touched My Heart"

By Natalia Martinez
|  Thursday, Aug 11, 2011  |  Updated 6:51 AM EDT
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Jay-Z and Kanye West have a song on their new album out this week that pays tribute to slain Pace University football player, Danroy Henry.

Jay-Z and Kanye West have a song on their new album out this week that pays tribute to slain Pace University football player, Danroy Henry.

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The mother of a slain Pace University football player memorialized in a song by Kanye West and Jay -Z said she listened to tribute many times, learned its lyrics and will "always have a special place in her heart" for it.

“It definitely touched my heart,” said Angela Henry, the mother of Danroy Henry,  the 20-year old student and star athlete who was killed by police on Oct. 17 as he drove from a disturbance outside a bar in Thornwood, N.Y., following his school’s homecoming game.

His life and tragic death are recalled in “Murder to Excellence,” track 10 of the newly released Jay-Z and Kanye West album, “Watch the Throne,”  which was released on Monday.

"This is to the memory of Danroy Henry," Jay-Z raps in the first verse. "Too much enemy fire to catch a friendly."

According to Henry’s mother, the young man was a huge Kanye West and Jay-Z fan. In fact, his family played Kanye West’s “Champion,” one of his favorite songs, at his memorial.

“It’s definitely bittersweet ,” Henry told NBC New York. “To know that he was a huge fan and that these big artists used their powerful voices to bring attention to what happened to him.” 

D.J.’s father, Dan Henry, posted a video on YouTube and on “R.I.P. Danroy (DJ) Henry,” the Facebook page the family has set up in memory of their son soon after the song was released.

“I wanna thank Kanye West and Jay-Z on behalf of my family for joining us to bring attention to what is for us, real life,” Dan Henry says in the video.

The song "will always hold a special place in our heart,” said Angela Henry,  who established djdreamfund.org to help underprivileged children participate in sports and afford sports fees and athletic equipment.  “I would just love to meet them just to be able to say ‘thank you’ in person."
 

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