There are no words to truly describe this right now, but Ashley Cain and Safiyya Vorajee are facing every parent's worst nightmare.
On Sunday, The Challenge star and his girlfriend confirmed that their 8-month-old baby girl, Azaylia Diamond, had passed away.
The little girl succumbed after a battle with leukemia.
Cain has revealed the horrible news of his daughter being diagnosed with this illness back in October, not long after she was born.
He wrote on Instagram following her passing:
"Rest In Paradise Princess 👼🏼🌈I will always hold you in my heart until I can hold you again in heaven ❤️😢 #AzayliaDiamondCain."
Added Vorajee in a heartbreaking tribute of her own on social media, following the loss of her child:
"You are my Angel my heartbeat my soul."
"You will always be with me like a handprint on my heart."
"RIP my precious baby."
This past autumn, the 30-year old reality star revealed that Azaylia had been diagnosed with a "very rare and aggressive form" of leukemia, a blood cancer.
Over the next few months, the infant went through treatments in the hospital, as Cain kept followers apprised of her condition.
Tragically, they were not able to save her.
On April 8, Cain said her cancer spread to her brain, stomach, spleen, lungs and kidneys.
At that point, doctors told the family they thought "she's only got one, two days to live."
They told the parents to "make the most" out of this time with her, however long it might be.
How did he respond to that?
"I'll tell you one thing, I ain't got no plans for going anywhere this weekend," he wrote.
"I'm an optimist. I'm a believer," he told fans, after hearing from physicians.
"I have a positive mind frame and I know her strength and I know mine."
In a heartfelt Instagram caption on April 23, Vorajee gave fans some insight into some of what the family was going through, emotionally and physically.
She said that when she sees her baby girl's face first thing in the morning, her "heart instantly overflows with abundance of love for you."
Parents everywhere know that feeling.
She added that Azaylia's eyes have been "intensely dry," requiring eye drops "so her eyes can move," and that her care is around the clock "24/7."
Just so unbelievably tragic.
The couple did everything they could for their little girl, both medically and emotionally, giving all of themselves to her throughout her life.
During the two weeks the couple had their bundle of joy at home in April, they took Azaylia on walks in the area for the first time... let her play in a jumper ... and fed her in her high chair.
Just a day before the brave young girl passed away, she suffered a seizure that marked the beginning of the end of a beautiful young life cut tragically short.
Wrote her grieving dad shortly afterward:
Your determination inspires me.
You impress me each and every day.
I'm so proud of you. I can't imagine my life without you.
I have faith in you. My Champion. My Hero. I love you.
Two days before announcing the child's death, Safiyyah shared sweet photos of Azaylia sleeping in her stroller.
These words are hard to read, for us as outside observiers, let alone for her to write, as a grieving parent.
"Giving her 100% everyday is what she was promised, even when her eyes are closed I talk sing and shake her fav rattles so she is constantly surrounded by a positive vibe," she wrote.
"Appreciating the day the hour and the min is something I never thought I would do as we all take life for granted."
We send our heartfelt condolences to Ashley Cain, Saffiyya Vorajee, and their families during this unimaginable time.
May beautiful Azaylia rest in paradise.
Tragedy has hit home for Scottie Pippen.
The former NBA superstar - who won six championships and who was formerly married to Real Housewife of Miami Larsa Pippen - announced on Monday that his oldest son had passed away.
Antron Pippen was 33 years old.
"I'm heartbroken to share that yesterday, I said goodbye to my firstborn son Antron," Pippen wrote alongside photos of Antron, such as the ones above and below.
"The two of us shared a love for basketball and we had countless conversations about the game."
Pippen shared the late child with ex-wife Karen McCollum.
No cause of death has been confirmed to the public at this time.
"Antron suffered from chronic asthma and if he hadn't had it, I truly believe he would've made it to the NBA," Scottie said of Antron, who played basketball just like his famous father.
"He never let that get him down, though.
Antron stayed positive and worked hard, and I am so proud of the man that he became."
Scottie also asked his followers to keep Antron's mother, McCollum, "and all of his family and friends in your thoughts and prayers," adding:
"A kind heart and beautiful soul gone way too soon. I love you, son, rest easy until we meet again."
Pippen was married to McCollum from 1988 through 1990.
The retired athlete and ESPN analyst is also father to daughter Taylor with former girlfriend Sonya Roby... daughter Sierra with ex Yvette Deleone... and sons Scotty Jr., Preston, Justin, and daughter Sophia with estranged wife Larsa.
Scottie's daughter Tyler, Taylor's twin, died shortly after birth.
During his own basketball career, Antron played for South Georgia Technical College.
After news of the athlete's death emerged on Monday, the team took to social media to honor him.
"The Jets family was saddened to learn of the death of one of our former players, Antron Pippen," the statement read.
"His family and friends are in our thoughts and prayers. Antron was a Jet during the 2006-2007 season."
In a statement on her Instagram Story, Larsa addressed Antron's death writing:
"Some truths in life are hard to accept. Your memories will never be forgotten!
"They will always remain with us forever. You are forever in our hearts, we love u and will miss u always Rip Antron."
We send our condolences to Pippen's friends, family members and loved ones.
Sunday Burquest, a contestant on Survivor: Millenials vs. Gen X, passed away on Sunday morning after a battle with esophageal and ovarian cancer,
She was 50 years old.
The former reality star had previously been diagnosed with breast cancer in 2012 and sadly received a second cancer diagnosis approximately one years ago.
Doctors said she had months to live after discovering Burquest had the aforrementioned diseases.
Sunday's daughter, Kennedy Burquest, confirmed her mom had passed today via Instagram this afternoon, sharing a moving tribute to her late parent:
To my unbelievably beautiful mama, thank you. Thank you for fighting as hard as you did for as long as you did. Thank you for being a best friend, a role model, a sister, and my mother all in one.
Thank you for raising me to love Jesus, and show that love to others.
That’s something you did so well. It breaks my heart to know you will never get to see me on my wedding day, or be there when I have my first kid.
But I know you’re watching over me. Although it hurts me so bad to watch you go, I’m so happy you are happy again.
I’m happy you get to be with Jesus, and see your dad. I’m happy you aren’t in pain anymore. I’m happy I got to have these past few months with you.
I loved taking care of you. You’ll always be my favorite patient. I love you to heaven and back a million times.
I know one day we will meet again. Until then, I’ll spend every minute missing you, and trying to make you proud. Rest easy mom, I’ll see you soon.
Burquest appeared 33rd season of CBS’s Survivor.
It featured 10 contestants born before 1982 and 10 born after 1984.
Burquest -- who was a pastor when she competed -- finished in seventh place, earning the respect of others by eventually making her way into the Millennial tribe despite starting in the older cohort when the game began.
Burquest remained active in the Survivor community after herr rrun, attending charity events and meeting fans. She remained popular with other contestants.
"Here's my thinking," she told People Magazine last summer after her second cancer diagnosis.
"No one knows how much time you have left. Accidents can happen. Miracles can happen. Someone healthy can die unexpectedly, and someone sick can live for much longer than expected.
'So I don't think of this as a death sentence; I think of this as something that has happened, and is now a part of my life. And I'm going to live my life as fully as I can."
Sunday Burquest is survived by her husband and four children.
We send our condolences to her friends, family members and loved ones.
May she rest in peace.
Gerren Taylor, a main cast member on the BET reality show Baldwin Hills, passed away on Sunday, according to the aforementioned cable network.
She was 30 years old.
"The entire BET family mourns the passing of one of our own, Ms. Ashley Gerren Taylor, beloved star of BET's Baldwin Hills," BET wrote in a statement.
"The untimely passing of such a young, bright light is difficult to process. BET's thoughts and prayers go out to Ashley's friends and family during this time."
No cause of death for Taylor has been announced at this time.
Baldwin Hills premiered in July 2007 and ran until March 2009.
The show was set in the African-American section of Beverly Hills.
It chronicled the lives of the privileged sons and daughters of doctors, attorneys, actors and athletes, as well as those less privileged teenagers who resided in a dicier neighborhood nearby.
Ray Cunningham, who has appeared on BET's College Hill and Love and Hip Hop: Hollywood, mourned Gerren's passing on social media.
"Just got the worst news ever and I'm still not processing it fully," he wrote on Sunday alongside a video of the pair.
"I've known @mstaylorxo since 2006, the #BaldwinHills cast was like the little sisters and brothers to #CollegeHill.
"I was sneaking her into parties with me."
Concluded Cunningham in a separate tribute:
"You will be missed. BET fam. Rest well love.
"We love u Gerren. Together today for unfortunate circumstances but my @BET family is forever."
Taylor worked a model and an actress.
Her career began at 12 when she was signed by the runway division of LA Models, making her at the time the youngest person to ever be signed by the agency.
In 2007, she appeared in the documentary America the Beautiful, which examined the stuggles of self-image and beauty standards in American culture and society.
In another message, fellow Baldwin Hills alum Moriah Johnson -- son of former NBA player Marques Johnson -- referred to as Taylor a "beautiful and confident soul."
"Still can't believe it.. Feels like I've lost a piece of my childhood.
"It's difficult to comprehend the brevity of life at times, and so we must live and love as best we can while we can," Johnson wrote. "
"Sending my love and prayers to the Taylor family and all affected by this untimely loss. Such a beautiful and confident soul. Enjoy your rest."
"Rest easy sis," Olympian Carol Rodriguez wrote in another social media tribute alongside a series of pictures of Taylor.
Added model Nia Riley:
"My beautiful supermodel angel!
12 years ago you entered my life being nothing but one of my most solid friends ever!! I'm so heartbroken! I'll never get over this, I don't understand.
"I love you, I'm going to miss you even more Pray for @mstaylorxo family please! Love you all!"
According to Essence, Taylor was a mother to a seven-year-old daughter.
We send our condolences to her friends, family members and loved ones.
May she rest in peace.
Prince Philip, the lifelong companion of Great Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and the longest-serving consort of any British monarch, passed away on Friday.
He was 99 years old.
A statement posted on the official Buckingham Palace website confirmed the tragic news.
"It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen announces the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh," this message read, concluding as follows:
"His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle.
"Further announcements will made in due course.
"The Royal Family join with people around the world in mourning his loss."
The duke had been admitted to the King Edward VII Hospital in London hospital on February 17 due to an undisclosed illness.
The palace later confirmed that he was being treated for an infection.
On March 1, Philip was transferred to St. Bartholomew's Hospital, also in London, where physicians continued to treat the infection ... as well as undertake testing for a pre-existing heart condition.
Following a heart procedure, the duke was discharged from hospital in mid-March.
It's been widely assumed ever since, however, that the prince was in his final days.
He married the then Princess Elizabeth in 1947 after a courtship that charmed a nation still reeling from the consequences of World War II.
Over seven decades of service, Philip often accompanied the Queen on royal engagements, while he also conducted thousands of his own solo appearances.
He once referred to himself as "the world's most experienced plaque unveiler," while the Queen lauded him as her "constant strength and guide" and as her “strength and stay” in a speech on their 50th wedding anniversary in 1997.
In 2017, Philip retired and mostly receded from the spotlight.
While the prince spent a bulk of his time since then at his rural Sandringham estate, he was sometimes seen in later years at major family events -- such as the wedding of Meghan Markle and Princee Harry at Windsor Castle
“I, and his whole family, and this and many other countries, owe him a debt greater than he would ever claim or we shall ever know,” the Queen said during her aforementioned anniversary speech.
As portrayed on screen on Netflix's wildly popular The Crown (first by Matt Smith and then by Tobias Menzies), Philip needed some time to adjust to his role as husband to a monarch.
He developed a reputation for the occasional brusque comment and/or crass remark, while also attempting to modernize a royal family whose traditions dated back numerous decades.
“The queen inherited from her father a model of monarchy that was very hands off, old-fashioned and slightly invisible,” said Sarah Gristwood, a historian and the author of Elizabeth: The Queen and the Crown.
“It wasn’t equipped to deal with a new media age, and Prince Philip played a huge role in moving it forward then," she added.
Elizabeth and Philip got married in Westminster Abbey on November 20, 1947... with around 2,000 guests in attendance and another 200 million listening to the ceremony on the radio.
Philip, who renounced his Greek royal title to become a British citizen, wrote to Elizabeth prior to this vow exchange:
"To have been spared in the war and seen victory, to have been given the chance to rest and to re-adjust myself, to have fallen in love completely and unreservedly, makes all one’s personal and even the world’s troubles seem small and petty."
The man had a way with words, huh?
Speaking at Downing Street on Friday, prime minister Boris Johnson said of the late prince:
Prince Philip earned the affection of generations here in the United Kingdom, across the Commonwealth, and around the world.
Like the expert carriage driver that he was, he helped to steer the Royal Family and the monarchy so that it remains an institution indisputably vital to the balance and happiness of our national life.
Added Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury:
He consistently put the interests of others ahead of his own and, in so doing, provided an outstanding example of Christian service.
As we recover and rebuild after the terrible trial of the coronavirus pandemic, we will need fortitude and a deep sense of commitment to serving others.
May Prince Philip rest in peace.
Linda Torres, a close friend of reality star Angela Raiola who often appeared on the VH1 reality series Big Ang, died on Thursday, just nine weeks after being diagnosed with COVID-19.
She was 67 years old.
Torres also made a couple of cameos on another popular reality television program, Mob Wives.
Torres passed away at Staten Island University Hospital, according to multiple celebrity gossip and news media reports.
She died after complications from the aforementioned virus forced her on to a ventilator, Big Ang's sister, Janine Detore, told People Magazine, in an interview earlier this morning.
"Linda was the life of the party - like my sister."
"Very fun to be around, not negative, just wanted to have a fun time," Detore said of her friend, adding:
"I get so sad to know that she's gone now.
"I absolutely love Linda. She's fabulous."
Big Ang was originally a spinoff of Mob Wives and it was anchored by Raiola (aka Big Ang), who died five years ago of throat cancer.
Raiola was only 55 when she tragically passed.
According to TMZ, Torres suffered from underlying medical conditions that made her more at risk for a fatal case of COVID-19.
Along with her age, the cable network personality was battling other serious conditions that left her vulnerable to infection.
According to insiders, she fought a battle with breast cancer and, recently, had surgery to implant a chemo port.
Tragically, the virus that has caused so much heartache over the past year was too much for her to overcome.
Linda's daughters were caring for their mom and took her to the hospital just over two months, thinking this port had become infected.
This was when the COVID diagnosis took place.
"She was placed on a ventilator then they took off the ventilator," Detore told People. "She really was fighting, but I guess she couldn't really battle it. It was too much."
In an 2013 interview with Mikki May of MyEPK about Big Ang and Mob Wives, Torres said:
“Big Ang is one of my best friends for 40 years."
"All the girls that we hang out with, you know, we get together, we have parties, we shoot a lot of Patron, we laugh, we fight, we go out with a lot of young guys, we have a really good time."
She added back at that time, regarding the two shows:
"Mob Wives is a little more serious."
"In the Big Ang show, we’re very down to earth and quiet, and we’re looking for fun and no drama."
"My Big Ang is a no-drama mama, but I’m her little pit bull.”
Detore added that she considered Torres as much a part of her family as any blood relative, writing on Instagram:
"Rest In Peace my friend. you'll be missed. "We love you always. Angela take care of @blondelindavh1 #onlythegooddieyoung."
All of us at The Hollywood Gossip send our condolences to the friends, family members and loved ones of Linda Torres.
May she and the rest of the celebrities and regular citizens alike who we have lost to Covid-19 rest in eternal peace.
Deshayla Harris, a cast member on the final season of Bad Girls Club, has been confirmed as as one of two victims killed in a trio of shootings in Virginia Beach on Friday.
She was 29 years old.
According to a state released yesterday by local authorities, Harris is believed to have been a "bystander at the second" incident.
The shooting remains under investigation -- and is not believed to have been connected with the other shooting incidents on Friday.
No arrests have been made in connection with the fatalities.
"We do believe that [Harris] truly is, at this point in time, an innocent victim that was probably struck by stray gunfire in some regards," Virginia Beach Police Chief Paul Neudigate said at a Saturday press conference.
Not many other details are available at this time.
On Saturday night, Bad Girls Club released a statement regarding Harris' death.
"Our thoughts and deepest sympathies go out to Deshayla's family and loved ones," the program wrote on its Twitter page.
Her murder was also mourned by fellow Bad Girls Club star Key Hamilton.
"You didn't deserve this man this sh-- jus don't feel real ....I'm sick affffff rest easy Babygirl," Hamilton wrote.
"Thank you for always pushing me and supporting me no matter where we were in our friendship...watch over me I love you ...we literally JUST talked 3 days ago."
The first shooting in Virginia Beach on Friday injured numerous individuals, but there were no fatalities, authorities said.
However, the third shooting, which was officer-involved, claimed the life of Donovon W. Lynch, 25, while the second took Harris.
The body cam on the officer involved in the incident with Lynch was not on for "unknown reasons," prompting questions surrounding his death.
A protest was held later that night, with demonstrators calling for the police officer involved to be held accountable for what transpired.
"As much as we would like to be transparent -- we pride ourselves on being accountable and responsive -- I do not have the answers that the community is looking for in regards to this death right now," said VBPD Chief Neudigate on Saturday.
Lynch's passing has been mourned by several family members and friends, with his father calling Lynch a "dream son."
"Intelligent, handsome, a scholar, an athlete, an entrepreneur and loved by all he came in contact with," he said in a statement to WAVY. "Rest in Peace Don!
In total, 10 people were injured by gunfire -- including two who died -- in three separate shootings Friday in Virginia Beach, according to police.
Three people have been arrested and each charged with seven counts of felonious assault, use of a firearm in commission of a felony and reckless handling of a firearm.
Harris, meanwhile, was known as “Shay" when she appeared on the 17th and final season of Bad Girls Club in 2017.
A native of Norfolk, Virginia, Harris was nicknamed “The Firecracker Fashionista” on the show and represented the East Coast.
We send our condolences to her friends, family members and loved ones.
May Deshayla Harris rest in peace.
Taylor Dee, a Dallas-based musician whose real name was Taylor Dawn Carroll, died on March 14 in a Texas hospital after being involved in a car accident, according to multiple media reports.
She was 33 years old.
The fatal tragedy took place around 10 p.m. on the eastbound TEXpress lane near the 100 block of West Airport Freeway, according to a news release from the Euless City Police Department.
Investigators have said that the singer was driving a 2002 Chevrolet Trailblazer when she tried to make an abrupt lane change.
The vehicle missed the turn... and crashed into a cushion barrier.
"It looks like she made a last minute decision to attempt to go from the toll lane into the exit lane," said Euless Police Sergeant Scott Peterson on Monday evening.
The aforementioned release detailed how Dee's vehicle then flipped into the air, hit a steel highway sign and landed upside down on the highway.
Investigators believe Taylor was not wearing her seatbelt when the crash occurred.
Per Peterson: Dee appeared to have been ejected from her car.
He added that her unnamed male passenger was wearing his seatbelt and was released from the hospital the next day.
Dee, sadly, was transported to a hospital, which is where she passed away from the injuries she sustained.
An investigation is expected to delve further into what transpired. but no criminal charges are expected to be pressed.
Linda Wilson, president of the Texas Country Music Association, mourned the singer in a statement to KTVT, saying:
"Taylor Dee was the real deal -- a true talent with a heart and passion not only for her music but for people."
"In every performance, her talent was evident, but more importantly she allowed her fans to know her heart," Wilson added.
"She will be missed tremendously."
The artist's agent, Shai Berry, said in a statement of his own:
"Taylor caught people's attention everywhere she went with her large wild personality and charming smile.
"She blew listeners away every time she stepped in front the mic."
"The power of her beautiful vocals were felt deep within the soul."
"Her energy and passion were so contagious that she left every show with a new team of supporters and fans."
"Taylor adored her children, family, friends and fans; loving them with everything she had."
"Taylor Dee will be deeply missed by so many but her powerful voice and message will echo for eternity.
"Life is short, Live your dream, Laugh along the way."
In 2019, she dropped her debut album The Buzz, which included the songs "Sawtooth," "Take Me Down," "I Hope You're Happy Now" and "Pretty Ugly."
Just two days before her passing, Dee performed at a concert at Rancho Loma Vineyards in Fort Worth, Texas, writing on Facebook ahead of the gig:
"Y'all come see us tonight! We playin at this awesome place."
Dee is survived by her son, Vayden, and her daughter, River.
A GoFundMe page, which has raised more than $12,000 so far, reads:
"She was a great mother of two beautiful children that she will be leaving behind. She could make you laugh about the craziest things. Her spirit was so free and she had a voice that the angels could hear.
"She had your back even when you didn't know it."
"Her laugh is something you can hear when she says LOL."
The GoFundMe page added, simply, and powerfully, "she will be forever loved and missed."
We send our condolences to the friends, family members and loved ones of Taylor Dee.
May she rest in peace.
Some truly beloved public figures have already left us this year.
These artists, athletes, politicians, and pop culture icons may be gone from this world. But they will certainly never be forgotten.
For their fans and loved ones alike, legends never die.
Their legacies live on; their stars will never fade; and their work will be cherished for generations to come, as those whose lives they touched pass the love and admiration on to future admirers.
Join us as we pay tribute to the lives we've lost in the year 2021.
May they rest in eternal peace and/or power.
1. Dustin Diamond
2. Cicely Tyson
3. Christopher Plummer
4. Larry King
6. Cloris Leachman
Brayden Smith, a multiple time Jeopardy champion who dominated the beloved game show during one of Alex Trebek's final weeks as host, died suddenly in Las Vegas on Friday.
He was only 24 years old.
No cause of death has been announced.
"We are heartbroken to share that our dear Brayden Smith recently passed away unexpectedly," his mother, Deborah Smith, Tweeted as confirmation of the awful news.
"We are so grateful that Brayden was able to live out his dream on @jeopardy."
Jeopardy! also released a statement amid news of Smith's passing that read: "The JEOPARDY! family is heartbroken by the tragic loss of Brayden Smith.
"He was kind, funny and absolutely brilliant. Our deepest condolences go out to Brayden's family. He will be missed."
According to his obituary, Smith was a five-time Jeopardy! winner who loved to play saxophone and listen to musicians such as Duke Ellington and the Beach Boys.
He was praised on social media as "Alex's Last Great Champion" and was looking forward to competing in the show's Tournament of Champions.
The sleuth won five games in a row and more than $115,000 during his week on the show, which was filmed in October of 2020.
"I'm really grateful for everything, for all the opportunities that I had," Smith said in a video the show posted to YouTube after the end of winning streak.
"I'm just glad that ... I was able to show what I was capable of."
Born in Henderson, Nevada, Smith graduated from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas with a degree in economics last year.
The late contestant also opened up about his impressive run on Jeopardy! in January, telling the program's correspondent Sarah Whitcomb Foss, "It's been a whirlwind" and adding:
"I just wanted to stay there as long as possible. It's really a great feeling to be on set — to be around smart, nice, warm people."
Smith said the "best part" of the experience was spending time with Trebek, who he described as "sort of a mainstay in my life."
Concluded the 24-year old at the time:
"To finally be on stage with somebody that I've seen five nights a week every week for over a decade was really a dream come true," Smith said.
Smith is survived by his parents, his three brothers and numerous relatives.
Donations in Smith’s memory may be made to the Brayden Smith Memorial Fund.
Trebek, who hosted the show since 1984, died November 8 at age 80 from pancreatic cancer.
Cicely Tyson, a legenary and pioneering actress who garnered an Oscar nomination for her role as the sharecropper’s wife in Sounder and won a Tony Award in 2013 at age 88, passed away on Thursday.
She was 96 years old.
“With heavy heart, the family of Miss Cicely Tyson announces her peaceful transition this afternoon. At this time, please allow the family their privacy,” read a statement issued the late star's manager.
No other details were provided at the time, including Tyson's cause of death.
The actress rose to fame in the early 1970s, becoming one of the first African-American stars to earn significant movie roles.
Along with her Oscar nod, Tyson won a pair of Emmys for playing a 110-year-old former slave in the 1974 television drama The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman.
The news of Tyson's passing hit Hollywood hard, but it went beyond that as well.
"When Cicely Tyson was born, doctors predicted she wouldn’t make it three months because of a murmur in her heart," Barack Obama wrote last night in a lengthy and heartfelt statement..
"What they didn’t know, what they couldn’t know, was that Cicely had a heart unlike any other.
"The kind that would not only beat for 96 more years but leave a mark on the world that few could match."
The 44th President of the United States continued by acknowledging Tyson's incredible work, her upbringing, and her passion to "speak her truth," adding:
"At a time when parts for actors who looked like her weren’t easy to come by, she refused to take on roles that reduced Black women to their gender or their race.
"Sometimes, that meant she would go years without work.
"But she took pride in knowing that whenever her face was on camera, she would be playing a character who was a human being -- flawed but resilient; perfect not despite but because of their imperfections."
President Obama also wrote that Tyson "helped us see the dignity within all who made up our miraculous — and, yes, messy — American family."
He sent thoughts and prayers and concluded:
Michelle and I were honored when Cicely came to the White House to accept the Medal of Freedom, knowing she was one of the many giants upon whose shoulders we stood.
A trailblazer whose legacy couldn’t be measured by her Emmys and Tony and Oscar alone, but by the barriers she broke and the dreams she made possible.
The former First Lady also posted two photos of herself with Tyson, writing how in awe she was Tyson's "humanity."
"Just by walking into a room, she had this way of elevating everyone around her. She was the personification of beauty, grace, wisdom, and strength," Michelle Obama shared.
"Carrying forward a flame that not only guided her for 96 pathbreaking years but lit the way for so many of us."
Mrs. Obama concluded that she will "miss [Tyson] dearly," but "smile knowing how many people she inspired, just like me, to walk a little taller, speak a little more freely, and live a little bit more like God intended."
In 2016, Tyson was among a group of 21 actors, musicians, athletes and innovators awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by then-President Obama.
The medal is the nation’s highest civilian honor and Tyson received hers alongside Ellen DeGeneres, Diana Ross, Michael Jordan and Bruce Springsteen.
Said Obama during this presentation:
“In her long and extraordinary career, Cicely Tyson has not only succeeded as an actor, she has shaped the whole course of history.
"Cicely was never the likeliest of Hollywood stars.
"The daughter of immigrants from the West Indies, she was raised by a hardworking and religious mother who cleaned houses and forbade her children to attend the movies.
"But once she got her education and broke into the business, Cicely made a conscious decision not just to say lines, but to speak out."
May this legend rest in peace.
Hollywood has lost a legend.
Cloris Leachman, the veteran actress of stage and screen -- likely best known for her role as landlady Phyllis Lindstrom on The Mary Tyler Moore Show -- has passed away.
She was 94 years old.
Leachman's manager, Juliet Green, confirmed this sad piece of news to People Magazine, stating that he client died from natural causes.
"It's been my privilege to work with Cloris Leachman, one of the most fearless actresses of our time," reads thsi message.
"There was no one like Cloris.
"With a single look she had the ability to break your heart or make you laugh till the tears ran down your face.
"You never knew what Cloris was going to say or do and that unpredictable quality was part of her unparalleled magic."
According to TMZ, the late star passed away at her home in Encinitas, California, with her daughter, Dinah, at her side.
Concluded Green in her statement:
"She loved her children and her grandchildren ferociously.
"A lifelong vegetarian, she was a passionate advocate for animal rights. The family requests that any donations in her name be made to PETA or Last Chance for Animals."
As a young woman, Leachman actually competed in the Miss America pageant... which garnered her a scholarship at the Actors Studio in New York City.
Over the years, Leachman appeared in some incredibly very profile and popular movies, such as Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, High Anxiety, The Beverly Hillbillies, and Spanglish.
Her lengthy list of television credits reads as follows:
Gunsmoke, Lassie, Twilight Zone, The Facts of Life, Touched by an Angel, Raising Hope, and American God.
She also competed on Dancing with the Stars in 2008.
Over the course of her impressive career, Leachman won an Oscar (for The Last Picture Show in 1971 )and a Golden Globe.
She was nominated for over 20 Emmy Awards, winning a record nine times.
In the wake of Leachman's passing, many have taken to social media to mourn her death.
"Cloris Leachman has passed. The Oscar and Emmy-winning funny lady stole her way into our hearts and always left us smiling. She was 94," tweeted Star Trek star George Takei.
"Rest in peace, and save a laugh for us when we get there."
Said Leachman upon winning her Academy Award:
"I'm having an amazing life, and it isn't over yet.
'Remember when Ben Johnson said in The Last Picture Show, 'I've fought my whole life against' whatever he said? I feel, I fought all my life against clichés. And look at me?
"I'm a hopeless cliché. … I am deeply honored by this."
Leachman wrote in her 2010 autobiography that she was proud for how she remained unique up until the end.
"I never wanted to conform," she wrote.
"I haven't conformed. I've tried, but I couldn't. I've never put a label on myself. I find it distasteful that people put labels on other people and say that's who they are, that one thing.
"When I was forty-six, people said I was in middle age. I shrugged off that designation. I didn't want to be lumped into a group."
We send our condolences to the friends, family members and loved ones of Cloris Leachman.
May she rest in peace.
Larry King, an iconic journalist, radio and television host, passed away on Saturday morning at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.
He was 87 years old.
No cause of death has been confirmed at this time.
Reads a statement on King's Twitter account:
For 63 years and across the platforms of radio, television and digital media, Larry’s many thousands of interviews, awards, and global acclaim stand as a testament to his unique and lasting talent as a broadcaster.
Additionally, while it was his name appearing in the shows’ titles, Larry always viewed his interview subjects as the true stars of his programs, and himself as merely an unbiased conduit between the guest and audience.
Whether he was interviewing a U.S. president, foreign leader, celebrity, scandal-ridden personage, or an everyman, Larry liked to ask short, direct, and uncomplicated questions.
He believed considered questions usually provided the best answers and he was not wrong in that belief.
According to TMZ, King was diagnosed withh COVID-19 late last year.
The reporter published 20 books over his distinguished career and also had a column in USA Today.
He suffered multiple heart attacks throughout his life and underwent quintuple bypass surgery in 1987.
After being in and out of the hospital in 2019, King was sent home -- and told he didn't have much longer to live.
The late star's nationally-syndicated late-night radio talk show debuted in 1978 across 28 cities and.
In 1985, he began to anchor Larry King Live on CNN.
King interviewed basically every famous person on the planet, including Presidents Gerald Ford, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama.
The popular late-night TV show lasted for a quarter century and aired its last episode on December 16, 2010.
It had become CNN's most-watched and longest-running program in the process.
Continued the statement that announced his passing:
Larry’s interviews from his 25-year run on CNN’s ‘Larry King Love,’ and his Ora Media programs ‘Larry King Now,’ and ‘Politicking with Larry King’ are consistently referenced by media outlets around the world.
They remain part of the historical record of the late 20th and early 21st centuries.
The company continued in its tribute to the late journalistic icon, whose presence may never be replaced:
Ora Media sends our condolences to his surviving children Larry, Jr., Chance, Canon and the entire King family.
Funeral arrangements and a memorial service will be announced later in coordination with the King family, who ask for their privy at this time.
Over the course of his life, King was married eight times, splitting from his most recent wife Shawn in 2019.
He is survived by five children: Cannon, Chance, Danny, Kelly and Larry Jr.
May Larry King rest in peace.
Some truly beloved public figures have left us in the year 2020.
These artists, athletes, politicians, and pop culture icons may be gone -- but they will certainly never be forgotten by their fans and loved ones.
Their legacies live on; their stars will never fade; and their work will be cherished for generations to come, as those whose lives they touched pass the love and admiration on to future admirers.
Join us as we pay tribute to the lives we lost over these very painful 12 months.
May they rest in eternal peace.
1. Kobe and Gianna Bryant
2. Naya Rivera
3. Neil Peart
4. Nick Gordon
5. Kirk Douglas
6. Pop Smoke
Dawn Wells, a beloved actress forever best known for playing the main character of Mary Ann Summers on Gilligan's Island, died on Tuesday in Los Angeles.
She was 82 years old.
According to a representative for Wells, who spoke to The Hollywood Reporter, the star passed away due to complications related to COVID-19.
Aside from Tina Louise, Wells was the last surviving regular cast member of the Sherwood Schwartz-created series... which featured a trio of women and a quartet men marooned on a desert island after their three-hour boat tour off the coast of Honolulu went horribly awry.
They survived, however.
On nearly every episode of the long-running sitcom -- which earned a rabid fan base years after it went off the air due to syndication -- the castaways came oh-so-close to escaping off the island.
Alas, they never did.
Wells portrayed the sweet, Kansas born-and-bred Mary Ann Summers on the iconic CBS sitcom.
The program ran for three seasons from 1964 to 1967, making a huge splash in pop culture.
A multitude of television movies were made after the show concluded; and the cast went on to make appearances on other shows, such as ALF and Roseanne in character.
The show also starred Bob Denver (Gilligan) Russell Johnson (Professor Roy Hinkley) and Alan Hale Jr. (Skipper).
"Mary Ann wasn't just a silly and sweet ingenue," the actress wrote in her book, What Would Mary Ann Do?: A Guide to Life.
"She was bright, fair-minded and reasonable, and I like to think that's what I brought to her. She was a little more of a Goody Two-shoes than I am."
Before and after Gilligan's Island, Wells appeared on an array small screen programs -- including Bonanza, The Love Boat, Gilligan's Planet, Growing Pains, Baywatch, Columbo and Roseanne.
"I don't get tired of it because I'm greeted with love everywhere I go," Wells told Penn Live of always being known as the legendary sitcom character.
"It's been a difficult time breaking the image acting-wise. You know, to go and play a real nasty girl. They always say, 'Mary Ann? Are you kidding?'
"To get past that is so silly because I'm not that person and that person [is] going to be on [television] the rest of my lifetime, most likely, but I'm greeted with love."
In 2018, Wells' close friend Doug Kirpatrick set up a GoFundMe account for his pal after he learned that she was struggling to pay medical and tax bills.
The campaign raised over $198,000.
Wrote Wells at the time on Facebook:
I am amazed at the kindness and affection I have received from the current outpouring in regards to the Go Fund Me Page that is grabbing so much attention and want to address it.
A dear dear friend of mine with a big heart was trying to help me with some common issues we all understand and some must face. He create that page with the love [and] emotion like someone protecting their child.
In a recent conversation with him I remarked Where did the time go? I don't know how this happened. I thought I was taking all the proper steps to ensure my golden years. Now, here I am, no family, no husband, no kids and no money.
I'm grateful that God has given me so many friends and fans who care, or it would all be too ....overwhelming .....I am grateful to any of my fans who are willing to offer support. However, please know that my outlook is positive and I look forward to seeing you all in my travels."
Wells, who does not have kids, was briefly married to talent agent Larry Rosen from 1962 to 1967.
May she rest in peace.
Tragedy has once again struck the world of reality television.
Nick McGlashan, a seventh generation fisherman who starred on the wildly popular series Deadliest Catch since 2013, died on Sunday in Nashville.
He was 33 years old.
The sad news was broken by TMZ and has since been confirmed by outlets such as People Magazine and E!.
McGlashan appeared on a total of 78 Deadliest Catch episodes, making his debut seven years ago and quickly growing into a fan favorite.
Nick's sister has also confirmed the unexpected development on Twitter, writing:
"My brother nick passed away. This is the hardest thing I’ve ever had to go through. Please hold your loved ones tight."
Born in Alaska, McGlashan started crabbing at the age of 13, frequently leaving school and heading straight for his father's boat to help the crew, according to his Discovery biography.
This same bio reads as follows:
"Nick is known for his witty quips, working through the pain, and not stopping the job until it's done.
"He has also kept the boat running through all kinds of mechanical issues, manufacturing quick fixes on the fly. Nick has a wealth of fishing experience…the epitome of a true crabber."
During season 13 of Deadliest Catch, McGlashan entered rehab due to addiction to alcohol and drugs.
"My life went from Bering Sea badass to full blown junkie very rapidly," he wrote in an essay for Chosen magazine, adding:
"I was broken and soulless. I was living without any hope of happiness. All I wanted was to stay loaded.
"Every bit of happiness stripped away by a powerful, cunning, and baffling disease."
Shortly after news of McGlashan's passing went viral, numerous fans took to social media to express their sadness and sorrow.
"RIP Nick McGlashan...
"This guy was immense on #DeadliestCatch and I send my condolences to Bill, all the crew of the Summer Bay and all the family and friends of Nick. Rip Nick," one person wrote.
"My heart is broken.
"Nick McGlashan was one of my favorite guys on @DeadliestCatch & as strange as it is, all the guys felt like family. We watched them grow & fall & grow again & I’m honored to have followed his life.
"You will be [email protected] Much love to the DC family."
At McGlashan's lowest point, he was drinking "a half a gallon of vodka, shooting two grams of heroin and one gram of meth every day," he wrote in the aforementioned essay.
The reality star even admitted he had overdosed three times before seeking help in November 2016.
Once sober, though, the TLC personality took pride in being an advocate and helping others get clean.
"The greatest thing about my recovery is that I can change someone's life just by talking about my addiction and recovery," he said.
"As I thrive in my recovery my world begins to make sense...When I look at my life and feel at peace with the changes I've made, that's recovery."
Over the course of its 16-season run, Deadliest Catch has had at least six other cast members pass away.
For example, deck hand Mahlon Reyes died back in August after suffering a heart attack.
No cause of death for this latest tragedy has been released yet to the public.
May Nick McGlashan rest in peace.
Natalie Desselle Reid, a veteran actress known for her roles in movies such as Madea's Big Happy Family and "B*A*P*S, along with the TV show Eve has died.
She was 53 years old.
The sad news was confirmed on Instagram on Monday afternoon via a statement that reads as follows:
"She was a bright light in this world. A queen. An extraordinary mother and wife.
"Her diverse career touched so many and she will be loved forever.
"Naturally, we are grieving and processing this profound loss and we thank you in advance for respecting our privacy at this extremely difficult time."
Natalie Desselle Reid died from colon cancer.
Among the more moving tributes penned in her honor, Holly Robinson Peete wrote that her friend was “a bright shining star [who] passed away this morning.
"I got to know her when my mom was managing her. She will be so missed … sending out prayers to her children and husband.
"Rest in peace, sweet girl."
Desselle Reid's other roles included appearances in films like Cinderella (opposite Brandy and Halley Berry), Set It Off and How to Be a Player.
Added Berry upon learning her former co-star has passed away:
"I’m in total shock... completely heartbroken. gonna need a minute. #RIP @NatalieDesselle."
Wrote Eve: "I can’t believe it @NatalieDesselle sending prayers,love and strength to her family. Rest in Peace."
According to TMZ, the actress diagnosed with colon cancer earlier this year.
The celebrity gossip website reports she was in hospice care in her final days, and was surrounded by family when she passed away.
"Sending my love and condolences out to Natalie Desselle family," Tweeted Bow Wow in mourning, adding:
"Had the pleasure of working with her on Tyler Perrys “Madea Big Happy Family” sending my love."
Added Yvette Nicolle Brown:
Seeing her in #Cinderella was my first time seeing her too. I was newly in Los Angeles. I hadn’t started acting yet.
She looked like me. She helped me realize that there was a place for me in the industry.
I’m so glad I got to tell her that. I hope she knew how beloved she was.
Natalie Desselle Reid leaves behind her husband and three children.
We send our condolences to her friends, family members and loved ones.
May she rest in perpetual peace.
Bobbie Thomas, a style editor and contributor on The Today Show, shared a heart-shattering Instagram post on Sunday morning.
It paid tribute to the journalist's husband, Michael, who died on December 1 following what Thomas described as an "heroic battle" that began with an ischemic stroke in April 2019.
He was 42 years old.
"Nothing is normal. Maybe nothing will ever be normal again. For me, it won't. My husband is gone," Thomas wrote in a caption of a photo of herself and Michael in the hospital.
"With all the fear, anger, and division going on in the world right now, it's so easy to get upset about the lack of normalcy.
"But I beg you, everyone reading this, hold onto what you do have right now instead of focusing on what you don't. One thing we all have is kindness. Absorb it, extend it, exhaust it.
"Because in the end, the ONLY thing that matters is love. If you're lucky enough to have it, please appreciate it, every moment, every day.
"Especially during the hard parts. There will never be enough time and some of our forevers are much too short."
The couple got married in May 2013 and share one child, a five-year-old son named Miles.
"As I type through tears, I embrace gratitude ... holding our precious son Miles and memories, of the time I did have with Michael, closer to my broken heart," continued Thomas.
"Thank you all for the love and support you've shown us and our families.
"Please go hug the people you love."
Michael suffered a stroke in the spring of 2019 and then dealt with health complications after the awful ordeal.
He initially had to use a wheelchair after his stroke -- but, in May 2020, he managed to walk with assistance.
In June, Thomas shared a video of Marion holding Miles for the first time since his stroke.
"A moment like this - the first time Michael was able to pick Miles up for a hug since his stroke - is why I temporarily stepped away from social media the past few months," Thomas wrote at the time, saying she had so much to embrace:
"With the world zooming along in high gear, I wanted some 'digital space' to focus on being more present.
"Amidst Covid, protests, and more there's never been a better time to listen and learn.
"And personally, there was much to embrace - my wedding anniversary (#7!), Father's Day, Miles' last day of Pre-K , the first day of summer, and of course Michael's continued recovery."
In response to this tragedy, Friends and NBC colleagues shared condolences on Thomas' post.
Jenna Bush Hager, for example, remarked: "Bobbie, your strength amazes. Love you so."
We send our condolences to the Bobbie Thomas, her and Michael's friends, family members and loved ones.
May he rest in peace.
Whitney Collings, one of the original and most famous member of the reality show Bad Girls Club, died this week, according to a Facebook message shared by her mother.
She was 33 years old.
TMZ broke the tragic news on Friday evening, alerting readers to the sad note left by Colliings' mom.
"I am completely broken and will never get over this. Life is so unfair. She was kind with a big heart," it reads.
The cause of death has not yet been revealed.
However, sources have told TMZ that Whitney died on Thursday morning at a hospital near her native city of Boston.
Collings appeared on 12 episodes of Oxygen’s Bad Girls Club between 2008 and 2009, but was eventually given the boot due to her bad and even violent behavior.
She then returned to film the Bad Girls Club Reunion Special.
Prior to joining the popular reality program, Collings worked as a sales representative for Priority One Marketing Group in Florida, according to her IMDB page.
At the time of her passing, she was working as a senior sales executive at Ecigarettes Wholesale.
A friend of the late reality star, Christina Marie, also confirmed this horribe news on her Facebook page, writing as follows:
“I am completely heart broken Whitney Collings we have so many fun memories together. Rest easy beautiful angel your with your dad now…”
Collins was only 21 years old when she rose to fame on Bad Girls Club.
While she was working hard as a barmaid in Boston, Collings was also studying biology and physics at Salem State, as reported by The Boston Herald.
Fans of Bad Girls Club will remember Whitney for being a (VERY) straight shooter when it came to confrontation and for having a temper, although she often showed her playful side with her sense of humor.
She was kicked off the series, as cited above, due to a physical altercation.
What transpired at the time?
"We were all in Cancun, Mexico at a club and Leah got into an altercation with Amber," she explained over a decade ago, adding:
"I tried to calm everyone down as we were leaving, when Amber came after me with a shoe. I got into it with her, but then stepped back and realized it wasn’t worth it.
"I tried to walk away when Amber started swinging at me. I ended up kicking her in the face and got kicked off."
As for how she felt about being part of Bad Girls Club?
"It was an opportunity of a lifetime. Good or bad, you just have to go with it. I would definitely do it again. I don’t have any regrets," she said way back then.
We send our condolences to the friends, family members and loved ones of Whitney Collings.
May she rest in peace.
Alexis Sharkey, a popular and influential member of Instagram with over 32,400 followers, was found dead in Houston on Saturday morning.
She was 26 years old.
The tragic discovery was made afterr Sharkey was scheduled to meet up with friends to watch movies on Saturday, yet never responded to phone calls or text messages, according to mother Stacey Clark Robinault, who spoke to local news station KHOU11.
Sharkey had not posted anything on social media for over 12 hours, either.
Robinault said that her daughter was last heard from on Friday evening.
Houston police, meanwhile, said Sharkey's nude corpse was found on the side of the road in West Houston, with authorities having opened up an investigation into what transpired.
While details regarding this fatality remain scarce, a friend spoke to a Texas ABC affiliate about Sharkey and said the 26-year old had noted certain fears to her a month ago ... during their trip to Marfa, Texas.
"She confided in me that night ... she's petrified," this source said. "This girl is scared for her life."
Robinault, meanwhile, echoed this sentiment when contacted by ABC13.
"I do believe she was murdered. Yes. From what I've been able to gather as well as a mother's gut," she said.
Sharkey's pal, Tanya Ricardo, told KHOU11 Sharkey spent Thanksgiving at her house and last spoke with her around 6 p.m. on Friday.
Ricardo explained that it was rare for Sharkey not to respond quickly:
"She is attached to her phone. She is a social media queen. She is an influencer. She works from her phone."
Hence the concern when no one had heard from the influence all day on Saturday.
"Please share this post!!! My daughter, Alexis Sharkey, is missing!!" Robinault wrote on Facebook prior to the awful discovery.
"No one has heard from her for over 24 hours and the police are involved. She has lived in Houston Texas since January and that was where she was last seen.
"Please help us find her and bring her home safely!! We are so very desperate!!! Please share!!"
On Sunday night, Robinault shared another post, confirming that her daughter's body had been found.
"It’s with deeply broken hearts that Mike and I want to let you all know that Lexi’s body has been found," she wrote.
"We cannot begin to thank you all for your love and the kind words you’ve extended to our family! Please give us this time to grieve this incredible loss to our family and this world!!!
"We will miss you, Love!!!!"
Sharkey had moved in Houston in January with her husband, Tom Sharkey, who also expressed sorrow over her death yesterday, writing on Facebook that he is "lost" after losing Alexis, who he called "My one and only!"
The state of Sharkey's marriage to Tom, however, has now been called into question by friends and loved ones.
"Recently, she opened up to us about it and divorce was being filed," a friend told KHOU11, adding:
"She was a very private person. She didn’t share a lot about what was going on at home."
A vigil has been scheduled for December 3 at Houston's Buffalo Bayou Park for Sharkey and a GoFundMe campaign has been created to raise money for her memorial.
As of Monday night, $12,516 has been raised toward the campaign's $15,000 goal.
We send our condolences to all who knew and cared about Alexis Sharkey.
May she rest in peace.
Luis Troyano, a fan favorite who advanced to the finals on Season 5 of Great British Bake Off, has died of esophageal cancer.
He was 48 years old.
“We are deeply saddened to hear that Luis Troyano has passed away,” the show’s official Twitter page announced on Tuesday, November 3, adding:
“It was a huge honour and pleasure to have him in the Bake Off Tent for Series Five.
"Our condolences and thoughts go out to his friends and family."
The Bake It Great author was a runner-up on his season of this beloved reality competition, which began in the United Kingdom and later came to the United States, getting renamed The Great British Baking Show in the process.
It has climbed to great heights of popularity amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Television viewers these days that are looking for a calming program, which features a bunch of nice people baking delicious-looking goods, can't get enough of the series.
They are mourning Troyano's passing across social media today.
Troyano's manager, Anne Kibel, confirmed this said piece of news on Monday, saying her client passed away last week after a battle with the aforementioned disease:
"A fantastic man with a love of baking that saw him get to the finals of GBBO, write a wonderful book, Bake It Great and do so much more," she tweeted Tuesday.
"Always in our thoughts."
Paul Hollywood, the veteran judge on The Great British Baking Show, also paid tribute to Troyano on Instagram.
"So sad to hear the news about Luis," he wrote, adding of the late reality star:
"He was a fantastic baker and will be missed by all in the Bake Off team.. my thoughts are with his family #ripluis #gbbo #series5finalist."
Similarly, many other Baking Show alums -- such as Candice Brown, Rahul Mandal and Jamie Finn -- mourned Troyano on their social media pages.
"Oh my goodness this is just heartbreaking. Luis was a complete gent and we had some great giggles at festivals," Brown, who won season 7, said on Instagram.
"Send love and strength to his friends and family."
Fellow season 5 finalist Richard Burr shared a picture of the pair at the Reality Television Awards while honoring his late friend.
“I feel lucky to have had such good mates to marvel at the craziness of short-term fame and long-term friendship,” he captioned the image. “I will miss you Luis.”
Chetna Makan, who also went up against the former graphic designer, shared a photo of Troyano playing guitar in the kitchen after his passing.
“Hope you get to play the best music and bake the most precise cakes up there!” she wrote alongside of it.
Kibel, meanwhile, uploaded a link to a Just Giving fundraiser page in Troyano’s memory to help raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support.
Troyano's season of The Great British Baking Show is now streaming on Netflix.
We send our condolences to his friends, family members and loved ones.
May Luis Troyano rest in peace.
Nikki McKibbin, a singer who advanced all the way to the finals on the very first season of American Idol, died early Sunday morning after suffering a brain aneurysm.
Nikki's husband, Craig Sadler, announced on Facebook on Saturday that his wife - who also went by Nikki Sadler - had suffered the brain aneurysm on Wednesday, Oct. 28.
Based on what we've read online, funeral arrangements are pending.
She was 42 years old.
"Many of you already know something is wrong," wrote Craig, as you can see below.
'The love of my life Nikki Sadler suffered an aneurysm on Wednesday.
"She would already be gone, but she's an organ donor and has been kept on life support to make that possible."
McKibbin finished third on the inaugural run of American Idol, ending the competition behind only Kelly Clarkson and Justin Guarini.
Added her husband in his tribute post;
"Even at the end she is still giving."
"She was so loved that I know thousands of you will be grieving with us."
"There are only a few hours left for me to hold her hand and kiss her forehead."
"The current Covid situation won't allow the huge service that she deserves, but I would like to offer you the opportunity to honor her."
She will be taken to the OR at 3:00 am Central time to give her final gift that will save the lives of strangers.
You probably know she practically worshiped Stevie Nicks.
Before they begin, they will play Landslide for her one last time.
If you are able, you can pause at 3:00 wherever you are and listen to it with her. She will know that you're sharing her farewell.
She loved so many of you and I know you loved her too.
A statement was has also posted on American Idol's official Twitter page.
"Nikki McKibbin was an incredible talent and we are deeply saddened by the news of her passing.
"She was part of our American Idol family and will be truly missed.
"Our hearts and prayers go out to her family and friends during this difficult time."
In addition to Craig, Nikki is survived by her son, Tristen Cole Langley, 22, who actually auditioned for season 13 of American Idol; and a granddaughter.
Regarding her time on Idol, Nikki is best-remembered for a cover of Alannah Myles' song, "Black Velvet."
She also sang versions of tracks by Stevie Nicks, Alanis Morissette, Melissa Etheridge and Janis Joplin.
Nikki also appeared on Fear Factor and Battle of the Network Reality Stars.
Sadly, the aspiring singer battled substance abuse issues, which also prompted her to land in 2008 on Dr. Drew's Celebrity Rehab.
The reality star then moved to a sober living house and her time there was chronicled on Sober House, a spinoff of Celebrity Rehab.
May Nikki McKibbin rest in peace.
UPDATE: Guarini has posted the following tribute...
@realnikkimckibbin was a fiery, funny lady who could sing the Hell out of a rock song with the same kind of ease and command she lovingly used to cut you with her twangy Southern wit.
Even in our 20’s when we were on American Idol together I could tell that she’d had a challenging life, and that not that many people had been kind to her along the way.
I’ll never forget the day that her idol, Stevie Nicks, sent her flowers with a card that said, “You are the Gypsy that I was..."
That's high praise right there.
And here is former judge Paula Abdul...
Nikki McKibbin was a strong & spirited woman who always stayed true to who she was.
She could bring the house down with her powerful voice and captivating stage presence. Our first season of Idol would not have been what it was without her.
My love & prayers go out to her family.
Sean Connery, a beloved star widely considered to be the most memorable James Bond in cinematic history, has died following a long illness.
He was 90 years old.
According to the BBC, which broke this sad piece of news, the Scottish actor had been ill for a lengthy period of time.
Connery's son, Jason, confirmed as much to the outlet.
"We are all working at understanding this huge event as it only happened so recently, even though my dad has been unwell for some time," he said.
"A sad day for all who knew and loved my dad and a sad loss for all people around the world who enjoyed the wonderful gift he had as an actor."
Connery starred as the big screen's most famous secret agent in seven James Bond films.
Eon Productions, the studio that produces the James Bond franchise, also reacted to the actor's passing on its website.
“We are devastated by the news of the passing of Sean Connery,” producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli wrote.
“He was and shall always be remembered as the original James Bond whose indelible entrance into cinema history began when he announced those unforgettable words -- ‘The name’s Bond … James Bond.'
"He revolutionized the world with his gritty and witty portrayal of the sexy and charismatic secret agent.
"He is undoubtedly largely responsible for the success of the film series and we shall be forever grateful to him.”
Overall, Connery's acting career spanned five decades. He won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor in 1988 for his role in The Untouchables.
A native of Fountainbridge in Edinburgh, Connery first portrayed James Bond in Dr No in 1962.
He went on to appear in five other official films, and the unofficial Never Say Never Again in 1983.
The popular star was knighted by the Queen at Holyrood Palace in 2000 and just celebrated his 90th birthday in August.
Connery also starred in the Alfred Hitchcock film Marnie (1964), along with Murder on the Orient Express (1974).
He memorably played Indiana Jones’ father in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1987).
Connery was also named People's Sexiest Man Alive in 1989 - at the age of 59!
He would experience a reinvention of sorts in the 1990s via a string of high-octane pulse-racers, including The Hunt for Red October, The Rock and Dragonheart.
In 2011, he announced hiis retirement.
Largely out of the public eye for the past decade or so, Connery spent a lot of time in New York City.
He briefly came out of retirement in 2014 to voice a character in the animated film Guardian of the Highlands.
Said Connery said in 1996 in his Golden Globes acceptance speech:
“I think if actors and actresses are good at what they do, and if you, the audience, are affected, moved by the stories we helped to tell, then that’s the real reward."
The actor - who won two BAFTA Awards and three Golden Globe Awards - was married to Australian actress Diane Cilento from 1962 to 1973.
The pair share son Jason, 57.
Connery later married Micheline Roquebrune in 1975.
May Sean Connery rest in peace.
Aaron Grissom, a contestant on on Season 12 ot Top Chef, died Tuesday after suffering "multiple blunt force injuries" in a traffic accident, according to the Pierce County medical examiner.
He was 34 years old.
Grissom was involved in a motorcycle crash near Chambers Bay in Washington, Yu Nanakornphanom -- who owned Moshi Moshi ramen bar where Grissom previously worked as head chef -- told The News Tribune two days ago.
Grissom had actually given his kidney to Nanakornphanom when the restaurant first opened, the eatery owner explained to the publication.
The ex-reality star left the establishment in 2019 and was cooking for touring musicians from various genres prior to concerts being canceled due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
His death has been ruled an accident.
Nanakornphanom added that the late chef had been living in Mexico since the outbreak.
“He had a lot going on,” Grissom former's boss said “I think he had a good future ahead of him. He’s always learning to do something. He was driven. He lived his life fully.”
In addition to his brief run on Top Chef: Boston, Grissom appeared on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives while working as an executive chef when the Food Network program centered on Dirty Oscar's Annex in Tacoma.
After he was eliminated from Top Chef, Grissom moved to the online series Last Chance Kitchen, a decision for which Bravo was criticized, Eater reported at the time.
Grissom had been arrested on domestic violence charges around this time, as he was accused of pushing his girlfriend so hard she suffered a knee injury.
Grissom was eliminated at the end of the first episode of Last Chance Kitchen, which was filmed before the alleged incident took place.
Nanakornphanom, for whatever it's worth, has disputed the story.
"He is not that. He might be hotheaded, but — I mean, a lot of chefs are like that," Grissom's friend told the News Tribune.
"I think that’s really normal for chefs who are really driven.
In 2014, Grissom served as the executive chef at Los Angeles' Bow & Truss.
He later teamed up with bartender Colin Smith to open a second outpost of Dirty Oscar's Annex in Montana in 2016. The restaurant was closed in 2018, according to online reviews.
"Bravo and the Top Chef family are saddened to learn about the passing of Chef Aaron Grissom from Season 12: Boston," a representative for the network told People Magazine in a statement.
"Our deepest sympathy goes out to his family and friends."
Diana Rigg, a veteran actress likely best known for current television fans for her popular role on Game of Thrones, has passed away.
She was 82 years old.
"She died peacefully early this morning," the long-time actress' agent told the BBC on Thursday. "She was at home with her family who have asked for privacy at this difficult time."
Rigg rose to fame as the witty, seductive spy Emma Peel on the British series The Avengers in the 1960s, earned her two Emmy nominations for the role.
She then garnered a new contingent of fans decades later as the gloriously wicked Lady Olenna Tyrell on Game of Thrones from 2013 to 2017.
This role also earned her Emmy Award nominations in 2013, 2014 and 2015.
Rigg actually won an Emmy Award in 1997 for her performance as Mrs Danvers in Rebecca and a Tony Award for portraying the the title character in Medea.
She was also known for being a Bond Girl in 1969's On Her Majesty's Secret Service.
Rigg's daughter, Rachael Stirling, said her mother died peacefully in her sleep after she was diagnosed with cancer in March.
"I will miss her beyond words," Stirling said to PA Media.
Rigg earned a special BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television Arts) award in 2000, alongside Honor Blackman, Joanna Lumley and Linda Thorson, who all appeared in The Avengers.
The actress, who also won a BAFTA in 1990 for her role in TV series Mother Love, was considered one of the most memorable Bond Girls of all-time by Daniel Craig.
Stirling, meanwhile, told The Hollywood Reporter that her mother "spent her last months joyfully reflecting on her extraordinary life, full of love, laughter and a deep pride in her profession."
Her agent, Simon Beresford, added:
"Dame Diana was an icon of theatre, film, and television.
"She was the recipient of BAFTA, Emmy, Tony and Evening Standard Awards for her work on stage and screen.
"Dame Diana was a much loved and admired member of her profession, a force of nature who loved her work and her fellow actors. She will be greatly missed."
Rigg once said she wanted to earn a living as an actress as soon as she turned 12 years old.
"I love my life," she formerly told People Magazine.
"I'm a very lucky woman. I'm in a position to do exactly what I want. I travel quite a lot. I read prodigiously. I go to the theater, to concerts. London is a wonderful city to live in."
May Diana Rigg rest in peace.
Ethan Peters, a social media personality, YouTube star and beauty influencer known as Ethan Is Supreme, has died.
He was 17 years old.
This is all we can report on at the moment, as details of the teenager's death -- including when it happened and for what reason -- remain unknown at this time.
On Sunday, several fans and friends in the beauty community mourned the death of Peters on social media.
"My best friend in the entire world, my twin flame.....the only person there for me when I had no one. I love you Ethan, I am at a loss for words. I wish I knew how bad it was. I know what you’d want me to say to the Internet rn but I’m to [sic] heartbroken to say it. Rip," fellow influencer Ava Louise Tweeted.
This same friend said that the well-known makeup artist, who hailed from Texas, had been battling with addiction prior to his passing, writing on Sunday:
"Addiction is a disease. I had to pull Ethan aside in recent weeks and have talks with him about his usage. Everyone close to him was scared.
I just wish I f---ing tried harder I f---ing wish I yelled at him more I wish I didn’t enable a single pill he popped.
Snap your friends out of it before it’s to [sic] late. Get your friends REAL help before it’s to [sic] late.
"Ethan told me a week ago he wanted help...I wish I forced him I wish I yelled at him. I f---ing wish I didn’t let him do pills in front of me. This pain is insane."
Manny MUA also mourned Ethan's death on Twitter.
"rest in peace ethan @trashqueenethan," he wrote. "You were so incredibly talented at such a young age. i know he’s made many many mistakes... but to say he deserved to pass away is horrible and inhuman. i pray for his family and loved ones, a horrible loss."
Added Tana Mongeau:
"Rip angel. my heart goes out to his family and friends. If you need anything reach out please."
Ethan's father, Gerald Peters, confirmed his son’s passing to Fox News, saying that he found the teen in his bedroom at around 11 a.m. on Sunday and believes he died of a drug overdose.
“The cancel culture we find ourself in weighed heavy on his heart,” Gerald told the outlet, revealing that he’d last spoken to his son at about 10 p.m. on September 5.
“He wanted nothing but to inspire, make people laugh and push the boundaries of what is acceptable in our world for All young people.
"He was [a] kind soul, who accepted everyone for who they were.”
If you're struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call SAMHSA's National Helpline -- a free, confidential, 24/7, 365-day-a-year treatment referral and information service -- at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).
Tragic news out of Hollywood today, as one of the movie industry's most beloved young actors has been struck down in his prime.
Chadwick Boseman -- best known for his starring roles in Black Panther, 42, and Get On Up -- has passed away.
He was just 43 years old.
News of Boseman's death was confirmed by a statement from his family.
“It is with immeasurable grief that we confirm the passing of Chadwick Boseman,” the statement read.
"Chadwick was diagnosed with stage III cancer in 2016, and battled with it these last 4 years as it progressed to sage IV," the family continued.
“A true fighter, Chadwick persevered through it all and brought you many of the films you have come to love so much,” they added.
“From Marshall to Da 5 Bloods, August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom and several more — all were filmed during and between countless surgeries and chemotherapy.”
The statement continued with a poigant revelation about Boseman's most famous role:
“It was the honor of his life to bring King T’Challa to life in Black Panther," the actor's family wrote.
Boseman's death comes at a time when tens of millions of Americans are attempting to come to grips with centuries of racial inequality.
He passed on the day that Major League Baseball players wore the number 42 in honor of Jackie Robinson, the trailblazer who was so memorably brought to life by Boseman in the critically-acclaimed film 42.
News of Boseman's death instantly made the beloved actor's name the top trending topic on Twitter, where tributes poured in from family, friends, and a legion of grief-stricken fans.
"Think about how one man played James Brown, Jackie Robinson, Black Panther...Chadwick Boseman was born to bring legends to life," writer Jenelle Riley tweeted.
"It takes a legend to do that."
"I keep thinking about my 3-year-old in his Black Panther costume. How he wore it almost every day when he got it, refused to take it off," Atlantic columnist Clint Smith wrote.
"The way he walked around saying 'I’m the Black Panther.' How happy it made him. What Chadwick gave us was immeasurable. What an enormous loss."
Boseman's loss is one that will no doubt be felt for many, many years to come.
Our thoughts go out to his loved ones during this enormously difficult time.
Chi Chi DeVayne, an accomplished entertainer who competed on two seasons of RuPaul's Drag Race, died on Thursday following several days in the hospital.
She was 34 years old
Just under a week ago, DeVayne (whose birth name was Zavion Davenport) told Instagram followers that she was under the care of doctors, sharing a video that included a very simple message.
"Keep me in your prayers. I'll be back soon," DeVayne said in the footage, which she posted last Saturday morning and which featured her attached to medical equipment while lying down in a hospital bed.
In July, DeVayne was also hospitalized.
That instance, it was for high blood pressure and suspected kidney failure, as she informed fans at the time that she had catheters to her heart and kidneys surgically installed prior to undergoing dialysis treatment.
DeVayne was eventually discharged later that month.
At this time, her cause of death is unknown.
A week ago, however, fans began to flood the comments section of DeVayne's Instagram, saying the star was "battling pneumonia right now."
Again, though, we cannot confirm the exact nature or basis of her passing.
"I am heartbroken to learn of the passing of Chi Chi DeVayne," RuPaul said in a statement provided to Entertainment Weekly, adding:
"I am so grateful that we got to experience her kind and beautiful soul. She will be dearly missed, but never forgotten. May her generous and loving spirit shine down on us all."
In a tweet posted to the RuPaul's Drag Race Twitter account, the famous drag queen continued:
"On behalf of VH1, World of Wonder and the cast and crew of RuPaul’s Drag Race, I extend my deepest sympathy - from our family to hers."
DeVayne rose to television prominence on season 8 of RuPaul's Drag Race, where she garnered fame and popularity due to her quick wit and personality... finishing the competition in fourth place.
She was later asked to return to compete on the third All-Stars spin-off in 2018.
In this case, the star was eliminated on the fourth episode.
DeVayne often credited the program with inspiring her to evolve her skills in an art form that served as a gateway for her to escape a difficult upbringing involving gangs, along with struggles with her sexuality.
"I was so stressed out and it got to a point where I was like, okay, I’m in the bottom every week. It might be time to go home and work a little bit more on my drag," DeVayne told EW shortly after her All-Stars 3 exit.
"I’m a real person, and I just felt it was my time to go. There was no reason to be sad or bitter."
Tweeted All Stars winner Shea Coulee upon learning the awful news:
"I'm literally so devastated and sick to my stomach. Wake me up when it's all over."
In addition to her appearances on RuPaul's Drag Race, DeVayne had a small part on season 1 of the Apple TV+ anthology dramedy Little America.
She also appeared on fellow Drag Race alum Yuhua Hamasaki's Bootleg Opinions YouTube series.
And guested on an episode of the popular queer talk show Hey Qween, while also taking part in various performing gigs and tours as a drag artist.
May Chi Chi DeVayne rest in peace.
Wilford Brimley, a long-time actor and famous commercial salesman, died on Saturday while hospitalized in St. George, Utah.
He was 85 years old.
The late star had been in the ICU, where he was on dialysis while being treated for other medical issues that have not yet been disclosed.
"Wilford Brimley was a man you could trust," Brimley's manager said in a statement to E! News and other outlets.
"He said what he meant and he meant what he said. He had a gruff exterior and a tender heart. I'm sad that I will no longer get to hear my friend's wonderful stories.
"He was one of a kind."
Brimley was likely best known for his film roles in Cocoon, The Natural and The Thing.
He also appeared on several television shows, including Our House, The Waltons and a handful of other programs.
Later in life, Brimley started to be featured in Quaker Oats commercials, quickly became synonymous with the food brand and the company's tagline:
"It's the right thing to do and the tasty way to do it."
Brimley was diagnosed diabetes in 1979... and soon cautioned viewers to check their blood sugars in numerous Liberty Medical commercials over the years.
For these actions, he was honored for in 2008 by the American Diabetes Association.
In the wake of the actor's passing, a number of well-known celebrities paid tribute to Brimley on social media.
"RIP Wilford Brimley What an absolute legend," wrote Seth Green, who appeared in 1984's Hotel New Hampshire with the actor.
"I was lucky enough to make my first movie with him. I was only 8, but he treated me like a peer, and gave me confidence as an actor. Forever grateful for his kindness & generosity."
Added Stephen Colbert:
"RIP Wilford Brimley - so many great performances, but I’ll never forget seeing him sing this surprisingly tender 'It's Not Easy Being Green."
And Meghan McCain:
"I am very sad to hear of Wilford Brimleys passing. He was a very early and passionate supporter of my Dads.
"I had the privilege of spending time with him on the trail, including a special bus tour with veterans. Sending love, prayers and gratitude for our experiences with him."
Brimley is survived by his wife, Beverly Berry, and his four sons -- James Charles, John Michael, William Carmen, and Lawrence Dean -- from his first marriage to Lynne Bagley.
May he rest in perpetual peace.
Regis Philbin, the legendary talk show host best known for co-anchoring Live! With Regis and Kathie Lee and the original version of Who Wants To Be a Millionaire, has passed away on Friday.
He was 88 years old.
"We are deeply saddened to share that our beloved Regis Philbin passed away last night of natural causes, one month shy of his 89th birthday," his loved ones told People Magazine, adding via statement:
"His family and friends are forever grateful for the time we got to spend with him – for his warmth, his legendary sense of humor, and his singular ability to make every day into something worth talking about.
"We thank his fans and admirers for their incredible support over his 60-year career and ask for privacy as we mourn his loss."
Philbin rose to small screen fame alongside Kathie Lee Gifford in 1988 when the friends started hosting Live! with Regis and Kathie Lee.
The two remained at the forefront of this daytime show for 15 years, at which time Kathie Lee decided to move on.
Regis, however, stuck around, partnering with Kelly Ripa until he finally decided to depart in 2011.
Philbin also made cameos in Miss Congeniality 2, Shrek the Third, Seinfeld, 30 Rock, How I Met Your Mother, and The Simpsons, among other shows and movies.
As cited above, Philbin was the original host of the American version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire in 1999, winning a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Game Show Host in 2001.
He also emceed the first season of America’s Got Talent in 2006, flying between New York City and Los Angeles to shoot both programs.
Here's a little known but incredible fact:
Regis Philbin appeared on the air for more hours of television (over 16,000!) than anyone else in human history.
He died a true legend of the business.
In 2008, Philbin earned the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Daytime Emmy Awards. He also received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Throughout his career, Philbin suffered through a variety of health issues.
He underwent an angioplasty in 1993, followed by triple bypass surgery due to plaque in his arteries in March 2007.
In December of 2009, the television personality had his hip replaced.
In the wake of this sad news, tributes from across the entertainment world have been pouring in.
Tweeted Jimmy Kimmel:
"Regis was a great broadcaster, a good friend and a tremendous amount of fun. He leaves behind a beautiful family and a TV legacy that will likely go unmatched.
"Regis, I hope our friend Rickles met you at the pearly gates with open arms and a slew of the insults you loved so much."
Upon leaving Live! in 2011, this is what Philbin said:
"I think I'm going out a pretty proud and happy guy.
"I wanted this show to be a show where people would feel better about themselves, would look at life in, maybe, a different way, a funnier way, and I think that's what we accomplished and I'm very happy about that aspect."
The television host was married twice and had four kids.
He is survived by his wife Joy, their two daughters, Joanna and J.J., his daughter from his first marriage, Amy, and grandchildren.
His son, Danny, died in 2014.
UPDATE: Gifford has shared a photo of herself and Regis on Instagram and penned the following caption:
“There are no words to fully express the love I have for my precious friend, Regis.
"I simply adored him and every day with him was a gift. We spent 15 years together bantering and bickering and laughing ourselves silly—a tradition and a friendship we shared up to this very day.”
"I smile knowing somewhere in Heaven, at this very moment, he’s making someone laugh.
"It brings me great comfort knowing that he had a personal relationship with his Lord that brought him great peace. I send all the love in my heart to Joy, to his children, to the rest of his family and to the innumerable people he touched over his legendary life.
"There has never been anyone like him. And there never will be.