Killer Mike and his wife kept first 9 years of marriage a secret from their families

The rapper credited his wife, Shana Render, with being his "fight coach" and the only person who believed in him after he declined a deal with a major record label.

Killer Mike and his wife eloped nearly two decades ago, embracing the adage “what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas” in a literal sense.

According to People, the rapper recently appeared on the “Off Menu” podcast with Ed Gamble and James Acaster, where he revealed some details about his early years with Shana Render — including the fact that they kept the first nine years of their marriage a secret from their families.

Rapper Killer Mike
Killer Mike, shown at the Grammy Awards ceremony in February, says he and his wife, Shana Render, kept their marriage under wraps for nine years. (Photo: Michael Buckner/Billboard via Getty Images)

“Within the first two weeks [of dating], I asked her to marry me, and she was like, ‘Get the f— out of here. You’re a rapper,'” Michael “Killer Mike” Render recalled. “So, after about, I think, four or five years, we got really high in Vegas, and really drunk, and I plead my love to her, and we went and got married in a f—ing drive-through marriage thing with our cab driver as our witness, and then we didn’t tell anybody we were married for nine years.”

Mike said he didn’t reveal news of their nuptials until he began facing pressure from Shana’s “traditional, tight-knit” family from South Carolina to marry or stop playing games with her.

“We were trying to talk about like, ‘Hey, we’re trying to build on some land here, we’d like to put a house here,'” he recalled, “and they were like, ‘Nah, you’re just f—ing on our niece. What are you gonna do to take it seriously?'”

The Renders share four children: Malik, 29, Aniyah, 26, Pony Boy, 21, and Mikey, 17.

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In 2019, Killer Mike told CNBC Make It that marrying Shana was his “smartest business decision,” crediting her with being the only person who believed in him when he faced financial difficulties after he declined a deal with a major record label and decided to go independent.

Following his three Grammy Award wins in February, Shana took to Instagram to celebrate her husband, writing: “We Winning baby !!!! 🏆 🏆 🏆 Clean Sweep 🧹This is your moment and we aren’t letting nothing take that away ! Live in your Magic Michael! #youdidIT #proudwife #LookAtGod.”

Mike, meanwhile, expressed his “heartfelt gratitude” to his wife on the social media platform.

“You have held me down through thick and thin,” he wrote, People reported, “and I couldn’t be prouder to be your husband and share this award with you.”