PITTSBURG, Calif. (KTVU) - A Pittsburg high school senior who was getting ready to serve his country, died suddenly last week. On Saturday night, the community had some star power to help pay tribute to 17-year-old Floyd Burell.
Inside Pittsburg California Theater, comedian Mike Epps was on display.
Epps was scheduled to perform four shows but added a fifth after hearing about the death of 17-year-old Floyd Burrell. The show quickly turned intoa fundraiser for the family.
Epps said, "I'm so happy that I have an opportunity and God blessed me with the talent to help someone out like his family in a tragic situation like this."
Burrell ran track and played football at Pittsburg High. He passed away on April 25th from an asthma attack during a training run as he prepared for boot camp and Marine training in San Diego.
His football coach said he had a bright future, "He was very well liked. It was very hard for the community and the school".
Looking forward to the next chapter in his life, a month from now Burrell would have been walking the stage at graduation- instead a comedian took the stage, adding some laughter in a week of sadness.
Backstage- Epps mourned with the family. And promoter Tommy T thanked his big-name act for stepping up.
He said, "He's absolutely amazing he did this in the drop of a hat and sold the place out."
The family remained thankful for the outpouring of support from the community of Pittsburg.
Burrell's father, Floyd Duprie Burrell Sr, said, "Our spirits are high, we are just grateful that there are people who are humble enough to know that this is not a sad day, this is not the end of a journey".
Mike Epps played to a sold-out crowd in a smaller venue than what he's used to. And for Epps and the Burrell family, this wasn't about mourning but rather a celebration of life.