We were very saddened this morning, May 28, 2014, by the news that Dr. Maya Angelou has passed away. Dr. Maya Angelou, born Marguerite Ann Johnson was a phenomenal author and poet, whose words were spoken so softly and gracefully that you could close your eyes and visualize everything that she was saying. Some of Dr. Maya Angelou’s most memorable poems are, I Know Why The Cage Bird Sings, Still I Rise, On the Pulse of Morning, Phenomenal Woman and etc. Dr. Angelou has accomplished many things throughout her lifetime from publishing seven autobiographies, three books of essays and numerous amounts of poetry, to receiving several awards and honorary degrees Dr. Angelou made countless amount of appearances including reciting “On the Pulse Of Morning” at President Bill Clinton’s Inauguration, “In and Out of Time” in Madea’s Family Reunion starring Tyler Perry, and speaking during one of President Barack Obama’s campaign rallies. Dr. Maya Angelou is legendary and forever will be apart of history and in our hearts.
Thank you Dr. Maya Angelou for being so inspirational to our culture.
This is the statement released by President Obama:
When her friend Nelson Mandela passed away last year, Maya Angelou wrote that “No sun outlasts its sunset, but will rise again, and bring the dawn.”
Today, Michelle and I join millions around the world in remembering one of the brightest lights of our time – a brilliant writer, a fierce friend, and a truly phenomenal woman. Over the course of her remarkable life, Maya was many things – an author, poet, civil rights activist, playwright, actress, director, composer, singer and dancer. But above all, she was a storyteller – and her greatest stories were true. A childhood of suffering and abuse actually drove her to stop speaking – but the voice she found helped generations of Americans find their rainbow amidst the clouds, and inspired the rest of us to be our best selves. In fact, she inspired my own mother to name my sister Maya.
Like so many others, Michelle and I will always cherish the time we were privileged to spend with Maya. With a kind word and a strong embrace, she had the ability to remind us that we are all God’s children; that we all have something to offer. And while Maya’s day may be done, we take comfort in knowing that her song will continue, “flung up to heaven” – and we celebrate the dawn that Maya Angelou helped bring.
Courtesy of Harpo Studios and Oprah Winfrey, here’s Dr. Maya Angelou reciting one of her most memorable poems, Phenomenal Woman: