Maluma is mourning the death of his friend and “little brother” Bastian Matías Madrid Ramírez on social media today after the young boy passed from terminal cancer. Maluma met Madrid Ramírez in 2021, and the two were pretty much inseparable ever since.

Madrid Ramírez met Maluma as a fan, but the two developed a bond that neither of them expected. From the time they met, the two bonded like brothers. Maluma regularly visited or video called the boy to check up on him.

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Maluma and Bastian become unlikely brothers and friends

It’s common for celebrities to meet with fans suffering from a terminal illness. We hear plenty of news stories about this or that person visiting a hospital to meet fans. However, we rarely hear about those celebrities developing genuine friendships with them, too.

Take this video, for instance, where the two are hanging out like old pals:

But that’s exactly what happened. Maluma and Madrid Ramírez treated each other like family. The singer eventually became Madrid Ramírez’s padrino and even bought his family a house in September 2022. The singer stood by Madrid Ramírez until the very end, when he finally passed on April 19.

Maluma mourns Bastian and honors him on social media

Maluma publicly mourned Madrid Ramírez’s death on the night of April 19, telling his 63 million followers about how incredible this kid was and how much of an inspiration he’ll continue to be.

In a lengthy Instagram caption, he writes, “With my heart broken into pieces I have to inform you that Bastian has left us from this earthly plane. My teacher, my guide, my friend, my little brother left leaving us all his teachings and leaving a huge void that nothing and no one will be able to fill.”

The image in the post shows Maluma and Madrid Ramírez, with matching hairstyles, in a brotherly embrace. Madrid Ramírez sits in a wheelchair while Maluma rests his forehead against his and holds the boy’s hand.

Maluma’s caption continues, “We fought until the end but the best part was his break. Strength to all who had the pleasure of meeting Bastian, ‘The Smile Child,’ I love you. I will love you forever my Prince.”

The singer is also working with the Playing For Change Foundation

In addition to showing his support towards Madrid Ramírez and his family, Maluma is involved with Playing For Change Foundation, which supports underprivileged children in getting access to music and arts education, as well as educating them on the power of art in social change.

In April 2023, El Arte de los Sueños — the upcoming 2023 Impact Awards Gala — is honoring Maluma with an award.

According to PFCF’s founder, Whitney Kroenke Silverstein, they are celebrating Maluma’s “contribution to the long-term success and development of future musical artists — nurturing their passion and creativity starting at a young age.”

The PFCF Impact Awards Gala is set for April 29 of this year and will also feature a performance from funk legend George Clinton.