American poet Maya Angelou passed away at the age of 86.
Maya Angelou may not have direct ties to hip-hop, but regardless she left a mark on culture as a whole, and hip-hop is no exception. The author of the famed book "I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings" was referenced just last year in Gucci Mane's album The State vs. Radric Davis II: The Caged Bird Sings, and that's just touching the surface.
The exceptional poet passed away at the age of 86, reports CBC. She was not only a celebrated poet, but a civil rights activist, a professor, an actress, and the list goes on. When she published "I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings" in 1969, she became the first African-American woman to write a best-selling book. She received more than 30 honorary degrees in her lifetime, showing just how valued she was by all communities.
The cause of Angelou's death has not been revealed, however it's been reported that her health has been declining for some time. She was scheduled for yet another honor at the 2014 MLB Beacon Awards Luncheon in Houston this weekend, but declined due to "health reasons."
Many artists have reacted to the Angelou's passing, you can read some of their thoughts below.
"People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." - RIP Maya Angelou— KELENDRIA ROWLAND (@KELLYROWLAND) May 28, 2014
RIP Maya Angelou.— Freddie Gibbs (@FreddieGibbs) May 28, 2014
Rip Maya Angelou— Raekwon (@Raekwon) May 28, 2014
You already know! RIP Maya Angelou...I hope you and James Baldwin are kicking it somethin special :)— Tetsuo & Youth (@LupeFiasco) May 28, 2014
RIP to Maya Angelou the Great🙏 http://t.co/LDVkg8DtYF 🙏— SWIZZ BEATZ (@THEREALSWIZZZ) May 28, 2014
RIP Maya Angelou pic.twitter.com/BCa7XPXGvd— Rockie Fresh (@rockiefresh) May 28, 2014
R.I.P MAYA ANGELOU ..ANOTHER GREAT GONE ..BUT NEVER FORGOTTEN ..A LIFETIME OF UNDERSTANDING AND MEMORIES LIVE... http://t.co/Q88zSVVCVx— Wu Tang Clan (@WuTangClan) May 28, 2014
Rest in peace to one of our generations greatest inspirations. Maya Angelou ~ http://t.co/XiRKiytLV8— Handsome Ass Nigga (@thegame) May 28, 2014
Absolutely heartbroken. We love you Maya. Rest in power Queen. http://t.co/avyaxYGpYr— Talib Kweli Greene (@TalibKweli) May 28, 2014
R.I.P. maya Angelou— g -host (@therealstylesp) May 28, 2014
Momentarily took the air out of me hearing you passed over. Then I smiled for you. REST IN GLORY MAYA ANGELOU. Luv!— Nasir Jones (@Nas) May 28, 2014
RIP to Maya Angelou. One of the most important poets of our time. Forever inspired by her words— Smoke DZA (@smokedza) May 28, 2014
R.I.P. MAYA ANGELOU #ICON— A$AP F3RG (@ASAPferg) May 28, 2014
"I've learned that people will forget what u said,people will forget what u did,but people will never forget how u made them feel" Maya— Lil Wayne WEEZY F (@LilTunechi) May 28, 2014
I tried to copy Maya's fluid voice early on but failed miserably. But because of her I found my own... RIP Maya Angelou and thank u— QTip (@QtipTheAbstract) May 28, 2014