Cicely Tyson Dead at 96: Tyler Perry, Oprah Winfrey, Shonda Rhimes and More Pay Tribute
By Liz Calvario
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Cicely Tyson, Emmy and Tony Award-Winning Actress, Dead at 96
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Cicely Tyson is being remembered by her former colleagues, fans, friends and family. The iconic Emmy-winning actress died on Thursday at the age of 96.
"With heavy heart, the family of Miss Cicely Tyson announces her peaceful transition this afternoon," Tyson's family said, via her manager, Larry Thompson. "At this time, please allow the family their privacy. A formal statement and details will follow."
As news broke of her death, Shonda Rhimes, who worked with Tyson on How to Get Away With Murder, tweeted, "I really need this not to be true." She also retweeted Netflix's message, which reads: "A force in her industry who opened the door for so many to follow. There will never be another with the poise, class, and talent of Cicely Tyson. Rest in power."
In an Instagram post, Rhimes added, "She was an extraordinary person. And this is an extraordinary loss. She had so much to teach. And I still have so much to learn. I am grateful for every moment. Her power and grace will be with us forever. #cicelytyson."
Zendaya posted a stunning black-and-white photo of Tyson, expressing her sadness. "This one hurts, today we honor and celebrate the life of one of the greatest to ever do it. Thank you Cicely Tyson. Rest in great power," the actress wrote.
Incredibly sad to learn of the passing of Cicely Tyson. She was a true icon in many ways. Whenever you were graced to be in her presence it was an unforgettable blessing. My heart goes out to her family and loved ones. 🙏🏾❤️ pic.twitter.com/9ef3pc6hO7
We have lost a visionary, a leader, a lover, an author, an ICON, and one of the most talented actresses the world has ever seen. A life, a career, a fire to celebrated forevermore! #RIPCicelyTyson 🙏🏾🙏🏾🙏🏾🖤🖤🖤 pic.twitter.com/Oh57mlbGoZ
Early in her career, Cicely Tyson promised herself that she would only portray strong women. Harriet Tubman. Coretta Scott King. Miss Jane Pittman, and so many others. An Honorary Oscar winner in 2019 for her extraordinary body of work, she led by example and will be missed. pic.twitter.com/OLW8LGUhml
This one cuts deep. @IAmCicelyTyson was my first screen Mom.. Elegance, warmth, beauty, wisdom, style and abundant grace. She was as regal as they come. An artist of the highest order, I will love her forever... ♥️ RIP pic.twitter.com/69Awj7qI8o
The King Center joins the world in remembering the life and legacy of #CicelyTyson. Trailblazer is not a sufficient description. What a legendary artist, sage and matriarch. We salute her. Rest in power, Lady Cicely. pic.twitter.com/aLAc8HgrCR
So many great stories about Cicely Tyson! Whew: that lady was amazing. While shooting a doc on her in Spanish Harlem—people kept stopping their cars! In the street! To hop out and say hi! Old people. Teenagers. Middle aged fans. “Ciss-el-lee” they’d chant as she’d walk by!