VICTORVILLE, Calif. — Rapper Steven “Saint Dog” Thronson of the Kottonmouth Kings died early Wednesday, authorities said. He was 44.
According to a coroner’s release from the San Bernardino Sheriff’s Department, the rapper, born Steven Michael Thronson, was found unresponsive at a friend’s residence in Victorville, California. Emergency responders officially pronounced Thronson dead at 12:10 a.m., according to the release.
An autopsy will be performed to determine the cause of death, the release stated.
“We will miss you and your big heart. You were one of a kind and our hearts (are) broken,” band members wrote in a Facebook post. “But we promise to keep your legacy alive through your music. Everyone please take some time and say a few words or tell a story about our fallen brother below. He touched so many and we will keep his legacy thriving.”
Born Oct. 21, 1975, Thronson founded the Kottonmouth Kings in 1996 with Dustin “D-Loc” Miller, Johnny Richter, Daddy X, Lou Dog, and DJ Bobby B, Entertainment Weekly reported. The California-based group combined hip-hop, punk, and rap ad often sang about legalizing marijuana, the website reported.
Thronson appeared on four of the group’s early releases, Billboard reported. After going solo, Thronson returned to the band in 2018 to appear on the group’s latest album, “Kingdom Come,” the magazine reported. Thronson also released a solo album, “Bozo,” in August 2019, according to Billboard.
Miller posted an Instagram memorial, writing, “Your memories will never fade to black and Your voice will always be with us. A true legend on the mic when he bust. My teacher when it came to this rapping. ... Rest in peace and pay respect to the original the king of all kings. SAINT DOG.”