Lil Wayne performed a concert at Indiana University this week, and on his way out of town Saturday, he went the extra mile to express his gratitude. No matter what you think of his music, his act of kindness made an impression on several people at an Indianapolis airport.
Amanda Lickliter was at the airport when Lil Wayne, 33, was set to depart, and caught a touching moment. She says that a military aircraft arrived at the airport just as Lil Wayne was about to leave, and parked next to the rapper’s plane.
Though he and several companions had already boarded and were ready for takeoff, Lil Wayne (real name Dwayne Michael Carter, Jr.) told the pilots he wanted to get off the plane. He then went inside the airport and shook hands with each of the roughly 30 service member’s hands, posing for photos and thanking them for their sacrifice.
Lickliter posted about the exchange on Facebook, and by Sunday afternoon the post had received more than 1000 shares.
She told NBC 5 that it wasn’t who it was, but the act itself that impressed her most.
“I would've shared it even if it was Joe Blow off the street,” Lickliter said. “I think it speaks volumes of someone who would take time out of their obviously busy schedule to shut down their plane and shake the hands of often forgotten about men. The fact that it was Lil Wayne just made it that much better.”
“It was awesome to see the faces of the guys he thanked,” she continued. “So many had to do double takes when they realized who he was.”
A native of New Orleans, Louisiana, Lil Wayne signed to Cash Money Records in 1991 as the youngest member of the label. Wayne's debut solo album "Tha Block Is Hot" was released when he was 17 and and debuted at No. 3 on the Billboard 200 before going platinum. Other albums include "Lights Out" (2000), "Tha Carter" (2004), "Rebirth" (2010), "Free Weezy Album" (2015) and "Tha Carter V" (2016).
In a 2011 interview with Hot 97's Angie Martinez, Lil Wayne announced that he would retire at age 35; saying "I have four kids", and that "I would feel selfish still going to the studio when it's such a vital point in their lives." The rapper's four children were all born to different mothers and range in age from six to 18 years old.
In November 2012 he said that "Tha Carter V" will be his last album ahead of him pursuing other interests.
Lickliter also said the fact that it happened without any cameras or members of the media there made it that much more meaningful.
“I thought this was a very admirable thing to do, especially when there was no obvious publicity in it for him,” she said of Wayne. “He seemed genuinely happy to give them the recognition they deserve.”