Justin Bieber shed a few tears on stage during a tribute to his late friend Christina Grimmie at the Winnipeg stop of his Purpose world tour on Saturday, June 11.
While the 22-year-old pop star was performing “Purpose,” he lay down on the ground and called out, “Grimmie, can you hear me?” He wiped tears from his eyes with the back of his arm before jumping back up to continue his performance.
The “Love Yourself” crooner reportedly became close with Grimmie, 22, while she was touring with his ex Selena Gomez, according to Seventeen. When Grimmie was only 16, she opened for Gomez’s We Own the Night tour in 2011. After competing on season 6 of The Voice and finishing third, she reunited with the “Same Old Love” singer for her Stars Dance tour in 2013. (Bieber and Gomez famously dated on and off from 2011 to 2014.)
As Us Weekly previously reported, the YouTube sensation was shot and killed by 27-year-old Kevin James Loibl on Friday, June 10. She was signing autographs at a meet-and-greet following her show at the Plaza Live theater in Orlando when Loibl, who was armed with two handguns, ammunition and a large hunting knife, fired shots at Grimmie. Her older brother, Marcus Grimmie, quickly tackled the gunman, who then shot and killed himself. Orlando police are calling Loibl a “deranged fan.”
Like Bieber, the “Hands to Myself” songstress, 23, broke down on stage during a tribute to Christina at her Miami concert on Saturday. She tried to belt out “Nobody” but was too overwhelmed to finish the song. Her stepfather, Brian Teefey, was Christina’s manager and discovered the singer on YouTube when she was just a teen. On Saturday, Teefey set up a GoFundMe page to help out Christina’s family with expenses.
Adam Levine, who coached Christina on The Voice, contacted the family and offered to cover the cost of her funeral, Marcus wrote in a Facebook post on Sunday, June 12. Other Voice coaches from season 6, including Blake Shelton and Usher, also paid tribute to Christina on social media.
Us Weekly’s Ian Drew and Christina Garibaldi discussed this story and more on Us Weekly’s Facebook Live News Update.
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