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Music mogul Antonio "L.A." Reid is remembering former TLC singer Lisa 'Left Eye' Lopes, who was tragically killed in a car accident at age 30 in Roma, Honduras, nine years ago today.
"I think about her often," he tells The Hollywood Reporter. "I miss Lisa a lot."
Reid recalls Lopez's burning desire to make a name for herself in music -- so much so that she moved to Atlanta just to be close to Reid and his business partner Kenneth "Babyface" Edmunds. She later got that coveted recording contract with their company, LaFace Records.
"She was like my little girl, and I loved her," Reid tells THR. "I was closer to her and I was devastated at the loss of her. I still love her today, and she still is in my mind and in my thoughts daily. It's been quite some time now but it's one of those things that just never goes away."
When he looks at musicians today like Nicki Minaj, Reid adds, "I see a little Left Eye in there. There's certain female artists that you can see the influence of TLC and that time."
Still, he adds, "'Left Eye' was an original ... losing 'Left Eye' was a big loss to all of us. I'm still saddened by it as we talk about it."