Della Reese, 86

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Research is the key in The Game Of All Games (http://www.stiffs.com), and information is precious. Therefore, DO NOT blurt out anything you may have heard about a celebrity's health, or even the fact that a famous person is really old, UNLESS that info has appeared on stiffs.com's SickTicker, OR, you have seen or heard it yourself on CNN, ABC, CBS, MSNBC, Fox, AND the Drudge Report. When in doubt, shut the fuck up.

Please also refrain from making public the names of any write-in candidates that have not yet been approved by the Fame Committee. If you don't know what the Fame Committee is, see this immediately: www.stiffs.com/blog/kpr

Be aware, too, that this forum is NOT the place to promote your own shitty dead pool.

One more rule: have fun.

Della Reese, 86

Postby ScottLevison » Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:44 am

https://www.usatoday.com/story/life/peo ... 881525001/

Della Reese, star of TV's 'Touched By An Angel,' dies at 86

Jayme Deerwester, USA TODAY Published 1:21 p.m. ET Nov. 20, 2017 | Updated 1:35 p.m. ET Nov. 20, 2017

Della Reese who enjoyed dual careers, first as a jazz and pop singer and later as a TV star on CBS' Touched By An Angel, has died at age 86.

Her representative, Lynda Bensky, confirmed her death to USA TODAY, noting, "We lost a magnificent woman who was a trailblazer in many ways."

Before Touched by an Angel debuted in 1994, Reese was mainly known as a singer, although she had costarred on Chico and the Man, Charlie and Company and The Royal Family and hosted her own talk show, Della.

She appeared on numerous shows such as Night Court, L.A. Law and Designing Women, but wrote in her 1997 autobiography that she had difficulty being typecast until she landed her Touched by an Angel role.

Touched by an Angel struggled with ratings in its first season, but the show grew to become one of television's highest-rated dramas. The show followed an apprentice angel (Roma Downey) and her supervisor (Reese) who were sent to Earth to solve people's problems.

"Through her life and work she touched and inspired the lives of millions of people," wrote Downey on Instagram Monday. "She was a mother to me and I had the privilege of working with her side by side for so many years on Touched By An Angel. I know heaven has a brand new angel this day. Della Reese will be forever in our hearts."

Reese's singing career began in church, when she joined the junior gospel choir at the Olivet Baptist Church in her hometown of Detroit. Soon she was singing at other churches, at civic events and on the radio.

When Mahalia Jackson, known as The Queen of Gospel Music, came to Detroit, she needed a singer to replace a member of her troupe. She turned to Reese, who was only 13.

Jackson was so impressed by the teenager's voice that she enlisted her for a summer tour, and Reese went on to tour with her for five summers. In later years she would remark that she would never forget what she learned from the legendary gospel singer, including "how to communicate with people through song."

Reese is survived by her husband, Franklin Lett, and three children.
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