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Hot! OG Cuicide Takes His Shot At Redemption

On Dec. 31, 1991, Darnell Price put a loaded 22-caliber pistol to his head and pulled the trigger. It’s a story he has told countless times. Most can’t believe he’s actually still around to tell it. As he runs his plump index finger over the faint crescent-shaped scar bordering his right temple, it still doesn’t seem real. Especially when he mentions that the bullet is still lodged in his skull, millimeters from his brain. At the time, doctors told Price there was no safe way to extract it, so there it stays. In the middle of his graphic tale, somehow the memory of a world of pain and depression that almost killed him is transformed into a well-timed quip.

“Shell gas station ain’t the only ones who got shells,” he says, flashing a jovial, gap-toothed grin.

Twenty-two years after nearly killing himself, the rapper/entrepreneur called OG Cuicide has plenty to live for. His husky 5-foot-10 frame sinks into a plush, black swivel chair behind a stately oak desk. He sports a gray, pinstriped dress shirt as he casually rolls a blunt on the desk just after 5:30 p.m. He’s in the back warehouse of a local Santa Ana weed dispensary, where he works as a bodyguard six days a week. That’s on top of managing his rap career; running his independent, internationally distributed urban-culture magazine One West; and being a husband and father of four. But his most important side hustle is perhaps as ironic as it is inspiring—he now lectures students on the proper techniques of suicide prevention.

For the past three years, he has talked about his life story at elementary schools, middle schools, after-school programs and high schools; he has been invited by everyone from the mayor of his hometown, Compton, to teachers in the San Diego suburbs to preach his knowledge on suicide statistics and how to help someone before they decide to check out early. “I show people that they can pull through,” says the bearded, 44-year-old Cuicide. “There’s a lot of people, poor and rich, killing themselves. So for people who come to that point in life, I understand them because I’ve been them.”

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