May 29th, 2014
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“Life loves to be taken by the lapel and told, ‘I’m with you, kid.  Let’s go.'”

                                                                   ~ Dr. Maya Angelou


Let’s go indeed!  Did Dr. Maya Angelou take every opportunity to grab life by the lapels? You bet she did!

Every day she grabbed life by the lapels and the seat pants and she held on for dear life, inspiring and showing us through her writings, speeches and screen presence the true passions of her life: civil rights, being kind, education and striving to do the best in whatever you are doing.

Resilience, beauty and grace; thy name is Dr. Maya Angelou.

President Obama awards Dr. Maya Angelou the Medal of Freedom in 2011.

President Obama awards Dr. Maya Angelou the Medal of Freedom in 2011.

I was saddened by the news yesterday of Dr. Maya Angelou’s death at the age of 86 years old.  She made me feel hopeful and I learned so much from her about inner strength and peace.  We have lost a wise and courageous woman who showed us that experiencing tragedy, even at a very young age, is an emotional  challenge but one that can be overcome and used to help us grow stronger and that you can go forward to live life to the fullest by developing your talents and helping others.

I believe that some people are put on this earth by God to show us, teach us and guide us to being our best selves and Maya Angelou was one of those rare people.  “She was a warrior for equality, tolerance and peace,” her family said in a statement.  “The family is extremely appreciative of the time we had with her and we know that she is looking down upon with love.”

Her groundbreaking autobiography, “I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings,” is considered an American classic because it dealt with the taboo subjects of racism and rape in the South in the 1930s and ’40s.  Angelou was raped at the age of 7 by her mother’s boyfriend, who was later beaten to death in an assault that some believe was carried out by Angelou’s uncles.  “My 7-and-a-half-year-old logic deduced that my voice (she testified against her mother’s boyfriend) had killed him, so I stopped speaking for almost six years,” Angelou said.

Incredibly, years later, Angelou regained the use of her distinctive and calming voice and also went on to write more than 30 books and win numerous awards.

She will be dearly missed.

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