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Broadway Actress Ruby Dee Dies at Age 91

Broadway actress and screen icon Ruby Dee has died of natural causes at her home in New Rochelle, New York, at the age of 91.

According to CNN News, the actress and civil rights activist died on Wednesday 11 June 2014. She was born on 27 October 1922 in Cleveland, Ohio and is most well known for starring in the original Broadway production of Lorraine Hansberry's play 'A Raisin in the Sun' in 1959 at the Ethel Barrymore and Belasco Theatres. She originated the role of Ruth Younger, and went on to play the role in the 1961 film version.

Her other Broadway credits include roles in the original production of 'South Pacific', 'Anna Lucasta', 'Purlie Victorious', 'The Smile of the World', and 'A Long Way from Home'. She was last seen on Broadway in Ron Milner's 'Checkmates' at the 46th Street Theatre in 1988.

Her numerous accolades include a Grammy Award in 2007 (With Ossie And Ruby: In This Life Together), an Emmy Award in 1991 (Decoration Day), Academy Award nomination (American Gangster), the National Medal of Arts in 1995 and the Kennedy Center Honors in 2004.

Dee was also know as a civil rights activist and was a member of the Congress of Racial Equality, the NAACP and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. In 2005, Dee and her late husband were awarded the Lifetime Achievement Freedom Award from the National Civil Rights Museum.

- by Dom O'Hanlon

Ruby Dee

Originally published on

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