Cicely Tyson, the award-winning actress who trailblazed a career across several decades and appeared in countless TV shows, films and Broadway plays, died Thursday at age 96, according to her manager.
Tyson’s role as a sharecropper’s wife in the film “Sounder” landed her an Oscar nomination in 1973.
“With heavy heart, the family of Miss Cicely Tyson announces her peaceful transition this afternoon,” Tyson’s family said in a statement from her manager.
“At this time, please allow the family their privacy.”
Tyson, who first entered the spotlight as a model, was well-known across the entertainment industry, earning two Emmy Awards — best lead actress in a drama and best actress in a special — for her role as a former slave in the 1974 TV drama “The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman.”
In a defining moment of the film, Pittman walks up and drinks from the whites-only water fountain.