TMZ

Our TV Shows

Got a Tip?

Call TMZ at (888) 847-9869 or Click Here

Maya Angelou

America's Poet Laureate Dead at 86

5/28/2014 6:14 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
breaking news

Maya Angelou Dead
update_graphic_red_bar
8:10 AM PT --
Angelou's family just posted on her Facebook page, "Dr. Maya Angelou passed quietly in her home before 8:00 a.m. EST. Her family is extremely grateful that her ascension was not belabored by a loss of acuity or comprehension. She lived a life as a teacher, activist, artist and human being. She was a warrior for equality, tolerance and peace. The family is extremely appreciative of the time we had with her and we know that she is looking down upon us with love."

9:50 AM PT -- President Obama calls Angelou "one of the brightest lights of our time" ... in a statement he just released. He added, "Michelle and I will always cherish the time we were privileged to spend with Maya."
update_grey_gray_bar
Maya Angelou
 -- one of America's most famous poets -- has died in Winston-Salem, North Carolina while recovering from a mystery sickness.

Angelou had been recovering from an "unexpected ailment." We're told paramedics got a 911 call at 7:39 A.M. from someone reporting a death at her home. She died with family by her side.

In a Facebook post yesterday, she said doctors had advised her not to travel ... forcing her to cancel a planned trip to Houston ... where Maya was to be honored Friday with the Beacon of Life Award at Major League Baseball's Civil Rights Game.

The famed author has received more than 30 honorary degrees from universities around the world. She was honored with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011.

Her most famous book -- "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" -- was also her most controversial ... for its depiction of lesbians, premarital sex, and porn.

Oprah Winfrey has called Angelou her mentor -- they met while Oprah was working in local news in Baltimore in the 80s.

052814_maya_angelou_oprah_launch
Angelou famously spoke at Bill Clinton's 1993 Inauguration ... reciting her poem "On the Pulse of Morning." 

052814_maya_angelou_launch
Angelou was one of the most inspiring poets of our time -- most famously saying, "I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."

0528_maya_angelou_through_the_years_footer

285 COMMENTS

No Avatar
31.

HRH Prince Michael    

From A Dream, to a Drone
From Segregation, to Suppression
From Oppression, to Oppressor,
From Freedom, to Fascism,
I Know Why,
The Caged Bird.....Flies.
(c)2014 The House of David/Melchizedek Muse Music

93 days ago
32.

TheRealDeal    

A true legend is gone, but never forgotten. RIP Maya Angelou

93 days ago
33.

Proud2bBlack    

All things bright and beautiful,
All creatures, great and small,
All things wise and wonderful,
The Lord God made them all.
My life has been balanced
with pleasures and trials;
I've had many teardrops
and thousands of smiles.
We will never forget you Ms. Maya Angelou and the world mourns your passing. Rest On Queen Lyrical, we shall meet again.

93 days ago
34.

pj    

I love her. I'm going to watch I know why the cage bird sings today and just go off my diet and eat like a pig.

93 days ago
35.

sh    

Remarkable woman. She had my full attention everytime she opened her mouth and her grace and charm came out in her words. God is receiving a wonderful woman today.

93 days ago
36.

Fashionistazoe    

RIP to such a strong and positive Black Role Model! She is proof that African Americans do not have to become a product of their environment. The color of our skin does not have to hold us back! Let's raise our children to become educated citizens. Not ignorant rappers. Sorry for the "I'm black and I'm proud" rant but she really was a phenomenal and inspiring woman!

93 days ago
37.

ella90    

A beautiful,intelligent,Phenomenal woman.

93 days ago
38.

tellit2    

RIP Mother of many.

93 days ago
39.

Mizit4    

Thank you Ms. Angelou. Take your rest in the arms of our Sweet Heavenly Father.

93 days ago
40.

RaineeDrops    

R.I.P Maya, such an inspiring strong wise woman!

93 days ago
41.

BigSamStewart    

One less racist.

93 days ago
42.

Na.na.na.na Booboo.....stick ya head in doodoo    

While the khuntrashians live on...smh. fly Maya

93 days ago
43.

Elena    

All the blacks will be crying today...GET READY!

93 days ago
44.

cluesarethere    

RIP .. An eloquent inspirational woman.

93 days ago
45.

Betsy Fogarty    

I had the pleasure of writing to her once and she in turn wrote me Back ~ I forever will hold her words of wisdom ever so close to my heart ~ Truly a sad day ~ Rip Ms Angelou ~

93 days ago
Previous 15 Comments | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | Most Recent | Next 15 Comments

Around The Web