Chris Lighty
Celebrities reacted to the untimely death of Chris Lighty (R), via Twitter

Chris Lighty, hip-hop mogul and founder of Violator entertainment, died earlier this week in an apparent suicide, and celebrities have mourned his loss via the social networking site Twitter.

The 44-year old mogul, who described himself as "Husband*Father*Leader" in his Twitter bio, managed artists such as 50 Cent, Missy Elliot, Ja Rule, LL Cool J, Mariah Carey, and Sean "Diddy" Combs.

Rapper Nicki Minaj tweeted, "Another tragic and inconceivable loss for the culture. #RIPChrisLighty," while Sean "Diddy" Combs wrote: "In shock."

"106 & Park" host Terrence J said, "RIP to Chris Lighty. Dude gave me life changing advice & wisdom. A tragic loss, he will be deeply missed. Prayers to the family." R&B singer John Legend called Lighty a "hip-hop visionary."

Lighty was found dead in his Bronx apartment with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. According to the Daily News, he had financial problems and reportedly owed the IRS $5 million.

Hip-hop pioneer Russell Simmons released a statement about Lighty's passing via his website GlobalGrind. They worked together in the late 80s, before Lighty started his own recording label.

"I am deeply saddened by the loss of a hip-hop hero. Chris Lighty has been a dear friend of mine since he was a kid. Was a brilliant partner in business and I was so proud of all that he had accomplished. He is an amazing example of how a passionate kid from the street can go to the most even-keeled, smart, thoughtful manager in the business and a generous philanthropist. He was loved by everyone who knew him, including me. He will be missed greatly by all of us," Simmons wrote.

Rapper 50 Cent described Lighty as a "hip-hop hero."

"Chris Lighty has been a dear friend of mine since he was a kid. Was a brilliant partner in business and I was so proud of all that he had accomplished," the rapper said.

Other celebrities reacted on twitter, as Rihanna wrote, "Rest peacefully Chris Lighty, my prayers go out to family and loved ones. Dear God please have mercy."

Rapper and actor Ice-T said, "If you are REALLY in Hip Hop you know Chris... If you're not... You have NO idea how important and what a great person he was..I can't hold back the tears.... Man!! No matter how big Chris got... He always treated me like the young kid I met, hustlin hard at the 'New Music Seminar.' Awwwwww man... Chris was my dude. I can't believe this. we go back...."

Singer Mary J. Blige tweeted, "R.I.P. Chris Lighty. Gone way too soon. This is unbelievable. My prayers go out to the Lighty Family."

Lighty leaves behind four children.