Pioneering African American Actor Cicely Tyson, Winner of Two Emmys, Dies at 96

HeadlineJan 29, 2021

And award-winning African American actor Cicely Tyson, who was born and raised in Harlem, New York, has died at the age of 96. In 1974, Tyson won two Emmy Awards for perhaps her best-known role as the lead character in the TV drama “The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman.” Tyson also had a supporting role in the 1977 television mini-series “Roots.” Cicely Tyson has played many acclaimed TV and movie roles, consistently portraying positive images of African American women. In 2005, Cicely Tyson spoke at a memorial service for the late Rosa Parks at the Metropolitan AME Church in Washington, D.C.

Cicely Tyson: “I do believe that the reason why Rosa Parks did not move when ordered to do so was because she knew that King Jesus was her driver, and she was not to move. She was like a tree planted by the water, and she was not to be moved. I tell you, she was climbing Jacob’s ladder, and she was not to be moved. Climbing Jacob’s ladder, and she was not to be moved. I have to tell you that last night, yesterday, when I viewed her body, I was stunned by the strength that came from her face. Even in death, it was there.”

The late Cicely Tyson, speaking at the memorial service for Rosa Parks in 2005. Democracy Now! was there. Cicely Tyson has died at the age of 96.

The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.

Non-commercial news needs your support

We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work.
Please do your part today.
Make a donation
Top