Cicely Tyson, a pioneering black actress who gained an Oscar nomination for her role as the sharecropper’s wife in “Sounder,” a Tony Award in 2013 at age 88 and touched TV viewers’ hearts in “The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman,” died Thursday at age 96.
The actress’s death was announced by her manager Larry Thompson, but he did not provide any further information. “With heavy heart, the family of Miss Cicely Tyson announces her peaceful transition this afternoon. At this time, please allow the family their privacy,” according to Thompson’s statement.
Tyson began her career as an actress in the 70s when Black women were finally starting to get starring roles.
The Oscar-nominated actress has won two Emmys for playing the 110-year-old former slave in the 1974 television drama “The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman.”
In 2016, Tyson was the Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient, the nation’s highest civilian honor. Forever President Barack Obama stated, “Cicely’s convictions and grace have helped for us to see the dignity of every single beautiful memory of the American family.”
Earlier this week, Cicely Tyson’s memoir “Just As I Am” was published. She told Associated Press in 2013, “I’m very selective as I’ve been my whole career about what I do. Unfortunately, I’m not the kind of person who works only for money. It has to have some real substance for me to do it.”
The cause of death has not been released.
The Baller Alert family sends our condolences to Cicely Tyson’s family during this time. Tyson was a remarkable actress and has paved the way for many African Americans.