Gigi Hadid and Hailey Bieber lead tributes to Virgil Abloh after death at 41

The designer had been battling cancer.

The MET Gala 2018 – New York
The MET Gala 2018 – New York

Gigi Hadid, Hailey Bieber and Justin Timberlake were among the stars paying tribute to “once in a generation creative mind” Virgil Abloh after his death at 41.

The Louis Vuitton and Off-White designer had been privately battling cancer since 2019.

Supermodel Hadid shared a string of photos of them together and wrote: “I am heartbroken by the loss of my dear friend, and a friend to the world, Virgil Abloh. He was 1 of 1.

The Fashion Awards 2018 – London
Virgil Abloh was 41 (Ian West/PA)

“His kindness and energetic generosity left a lasting impression on every life he touched — he made everyone feel seen and special.

“He will be deeply missed, cherished, and celebrated by me and all the people and industries that have been lucky enough to work around & know the true supernova behind this man.

“I picture him now like our Mickey Mouse .. forever with us, forever adored, forever magical, forever guiding us with that special Virgil FUN; I’m sure that’s how he wanted to be remembered, but still it will never be the same without him in the room.

“You will continue to inspire me every day, V. I feel blessed and honored by every moment.

“Rest Easy, my friend. You are so loved. You were the difference. As we always said.. ‘See you somewhere, soon’.”

Justin Timberlake also paid tribute, writing: “What can you say when a force like @virgilabloh is taken too soon?

“You gave the world so much, in so little time. And created with intensity… knowing better than the rest of us that life is short, but anything is possible.

“I’m honored to have known you. Thank you for sharing your gift with us.”

Hailey Bieber shared photos of herself with Abloh in the wedding dress he designed for her wedding to Justin Bieber.

The 92nd Academy Awards – Vanity Fair Party – Los Angeles
Hailey Bieber (Ian West/PA)

She wrote: “Virgil completely changed the way I looked at street style and fashion, the way he looked at things inspired me deeply.

“I will never be able to fully express how grateful I am to have known him and worked with him, from walking on his runways to having him design my wedding dress and all the other amazing moments in between, I felt he was always rooting for me.

“He was someone who always brought life, charisma, love and fun to any situation, and every room he walked into.

“A once in a generation creative mind that is so rare and I’ll never forget his impact. We love you Virgil.”

British Vogue editor Edward Enninful called Abloh “a giant among men”.

65th Evening Standard Theatre Awards – London
Edward Enninful (Ian West/PA)

He wrote: “Virgil Abloh changed the fashion industry.

“Famously prolific, he always worked for a greater cause than his own illustrious career: to open the door to art and fashion for future generations, so that they – unlike himself – would grow up in a creative world with people to mirror themselves in.

“Virgil believed that anything was possible for humankind, if only we could tear ourselves away from unconscious biases and norms and reassume the imagination we had as children.

“His achievements won’t just live on. They will continue to evolve, because we are only seeing the beginning of his impact on the creative industries and surrounding world.

“My thoughts are with his family and all those who loved him. Rest in peace, Virgil, a giant among men.”

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