Taraji P. Henson's grown up model son flaunted braids and jewelry in shirtless photo

Marcel Johnson is the 24-year-old son of “Empire” star Taraji P. Henson. The handsome young man is starting his career as a model, and his mother couldn’t be prouder. He lost his father being a kid, but now he’s earned a step-father.

Taraji P. Henson was still in college when she got pregnant with her first child from high school sweetheart William Lamar Johnson, but she made it work for both her future and the baby’s good life.

Marcel is now a grown man, and he’s grateful for everything his mother had to do to provide him with a life filled with luxuries and opportunities. The handsome boy has taken an interest in the fashion world, walking down the runway of New York Fashion Week earlier this year.

While he’s not as active on social media like his mom, Marcel recently shared a pic that left his fans swooning over his good looks. In the pic, he’s shirtless, showing off his tattoos and several necklaces with pendants. His short hair is braided, and he is rocking black-rimmed glasses as he sends a seductive stare to the camera lens.

Marcel lost his father when he was just 9-year-old. Lamar was murdered in 2003 after he reportedly approached a couple that had slashed his friend’s tires. The pair, Russell and Charlotte Nickelson, attacked him, hitting in the head with a lamp and later stabbing him multiple times.

They were sentenced to only 30 and 50 months, less than ten years of prison combined.


At the time of his death, Taraji and Lamar were no longer a couple. She had left the man a few months after her son was born because their relationship had turned violent and she had become a victim of domestic abuse.

In her book “Around The Way Girl,” Henson recalled about the incident that made her leave the father of her kid. She wrote:

“The next thing I knew, [Johnson’s] balled-up fist was coming straight for my face. I pulled my hand from my mouth and looked at the blood on my trembling finger. I said, ‘You know what? I don’t have to do this — and I don’t have to hate you for it.”

Henson, always the doting mother, felt terrible for her son and the fact that she had to grow up without a paternal figure by his side. She said:

“He’s had to deal with life in a way that a lot of young kids haven’t yet… Do I mourn for him? Absolutely. I wish my son had his dad. But sometimes things line up, and they have to happen, and we don’t know why.”


The actress announced her engagement to Kelvin Hayden earlier this year. The former NFL player proposed around Mother’s Day, as he surprised Henson with a bracelet and later on with a diamond ring that she flaunted on Instagram.

“I said yes Y'all!!! He started with the Cartier love bracelet BUT that was my #Mothersday gift and then he dropped to his knee and I almost passed out!!!,” she captioned the pic, and continued “#sheisofficiallyoffthemarket and she is sooooooooooooo HAPPY!!!!!! #GODIS.”

Is not clear what kind of relationship Hayden and Marcel have, but is safe to assume that Hayden will be stepping in to fill the role of a father that the young man has missed all of his life.

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