"Please keep @NickiMinaj & her family in your prayers...keep up the amazing love and support you guys have for her," the "I Wanna Go" singer tweeted Tuesday (July 5).
After learning that her cousin, Nicholas Telemaque, had been shot and killed near his home in Brooklyn during the early hours of July 4th, Minaj took to the social networking site, writing, "My precious cousin. My Baby. Killed last nite."
A relative of Minaj's cousin, Carol Clarke, told RadarOnline that the hip hop star is deeply hurt by the loss but is trying hard to support her family during this difficult time. "Nicki is absolutely devastated, as are all our family — she was very close to her cousin, but now he has gone," Clark said, adding, "She has reached out to Nicholas' mom, Victoria, to offer her words of comfort but she is too distraught."
Authorities say 27-year-old Telemaque, who had just left C-PAC nightclub, was found with multiple gunshot wounds before being taken to Kings County Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.