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Statement on the Passing of Ruby Dee

Brooklyn, N.Y. – Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke released the following statement in honor of award-winning actress, writer, and civil rights activist Ruby Dee, who passed away on Thursday at ninety-one years-of-age.

Renowned for her performances in “A Raisin in the Sun,” and “Do the Right Thing,” and “American Gangster” (for which she was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress), Ruby Dee was awarded the Grammy, Emmy, Obie, Drama Desk, Screen Actors Guild Award, and Screen Actors Guild Lifetime Achievement Awards, the National Medal of Arts and the Kennedy Center Honors.

“Ruby Dee was inspiration to generations of  women of color who could in her movies – finally – watch the African-American experience on screen. A loyal member of Delta Sigma Theta sorority, she was dedicated to her husband, actor Ossie Davis. As a member of the Congress of Racial Equality, the NAACP, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, and as the master of ceremonies for the March on Washington, Ruby Dee called this nation to its principles, and insisted that the evil of segregation could not persist. The example of her moral courage example inspires us today, and will continue to inspire the generations that follow us. She was a legend, onscreen and offscreen. Let us in our lives honor Ruby Dee’s legacy by following her example.”