Tag Archives: Legend

Actress And Activist Ruby Dee Dies At Age 91

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The legendary Ruby Dee passed away at age 91 at her home in New Rochelle, New York on Wednesday night, as reported to The Associated Press by her daughter. Born Ruby Ann Wallace, she got her start on Broadway, but it was a star turn as Rae Robinson in The Jackie Robinson Story,’ that helped to launch her film and television career.

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She appeared alongside Sidney Poitier in 1961’s A Raisin in the Sun, which earned her a Golden Globe nomination. The role of Mama Lucas inAmerican Gangster earned her an Oscar nomination and a Screen Actor’s Guild award. She appeared in critically acclaimed episodes forPolice Woman and Peyton Place.’ Starred in the made-for-TV movie adaptation of Dr. Maya Angelou‘s autobiography, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings and even made her way down to Miami for an episode ofThe Golden Girls where she played Blanche’s former nanny. One of her most famous roles was as Mother Sister in Spike Lee’s Do The Right Thing,’ which also co-starred her husband Ossie Davis, who died in 2005. Lee made a statement on his Instagram about Dee’s passing saying that he was “crushed” over death. Ruby frequently appeared along side Ossie in on stage and screen. In their autobiography,With Ossie & Ruby: In This Life Together,’ they discussed their political activism, and friendships with both Malcolm X and Martin Luther King, Jr. The couple were arrested in 1999 for protesting the shooting of Amadou Diallo in front New York City’s police headquarters.

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Her stage career included performances in King Lear,’ ‘The Glass Menagerie andBus Stop.‘ At Sunday night’s Tony awards, Audra McDonald included her as one of the black actresses that made her stage career possible. A breast cancer survivor of more than three decades, she leaves behind three children, musician Guy DavisNora Davis Day and Hasna Muhammed.

A private service will be held for family and friends, a public service will be announced at a later date.

 

Maya Angelou Has Passed Away

Maya Angelou 1928 - 2014
Maya Angelou
1928 – 2014

Maya Angelou passed away today at the age of 86 in her home in North Carolina. 

The legendary African American activist, poet, actress, singer, author was a presence on Earth who seemed as though she would never physically leave the rest of us.

But, indeed. She has…

Source

“The famous poet got into writing after a childhood tragedy that stunned her into silence for years. When she was 7, her mother’s boyfriend raped her. He was beaten to death by a mob after she testified against him.

“My 7-and-a-half-year-old logic deduced that my voice had killed him, so I stopped speaking for almost six years,” she said.

From the silence, a louder voice was born.

In her poem “Caged Bird,” Angelou wrote: “A free bird leaps/on the back of the wind/and floats downstream/till the current ends/and dips his wing/in the orange sun rays/and dares to claim the sky.

But a bird that stalks/down his narrow cage/can seldom see through/his bars of rage/his wings are clipped/and his feet are tied/so he opens his throat to sing.”

‘Still I Rise’ by Maya Angelou

You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I’ll rise.

Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
‘Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I’ll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.

Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don’t you take it awful hard
‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own back yard.

You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I’ll rise.

I cannot add anything more than to simply let Ms. Angelou speak with her strong, warm voice, and to listen over and over.

Peacefully, we know you shall rest.

Lou Reed’s Widow Laurie Anderson Writes Loving Obituary In Local Newspaper

Laurie and Lou
Laurie and Lou

Photo: Zimbio.com

The East Hampton Star published a very tender and loving obituary written by artist, Laurie Anderson for her husband,  rock icon Lou Reed who passed away Sunday in his home.

To our neighbors:

What a beautiful fall! Everything shimmering and golden and all that incredible soft light. Water surrounding us.

Lou and I have spent a lot of time here in the past few years, and even though we’re city people this is our spiritual home.

Last week I promised Lou to get him out of the hospital and come home to Springs. And we made it!

Lou was a tai chi master and spent his last days here being happy and dazzled by the beauty and power and softness of nature. He died on Sunday morning looking at the trees and doing the famous 21 form of tai chi with just his musician hands moving through the air.

Lou was a prince and a fighter and I know his songs of the pain and beauty in the world will fill many people with the incredible joy he felt for life. Long live the beauty that comes down and through and onto all of us.

— Laurie Anderson, his loving wife and eternal friend 

What a lovely and gently poetic scene Laurie has painted with her words…thank you, Laurie for sharing this moment with the world.

Rest peacefully, Lou.