Born in New York’s Harlem to Caribbean immigrant parents, Tyson began her career as a model before turning to acting.
She won Emmys for “The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman,” in which she played a 110-year-old woman in the Civil Rights Era reflecting on a life dating back to slavery times, and for “Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All.”
She played other legendary Black female historical figures, including Harriet Tubman and Coretta Scott King, the activist wife of Martin Luther King, Jr.
“Trailblazer is not a sufficient description. What a legendary artist, sage and matriarch. We salute her. Rest in power, Lady Cicely,” tweeted the Martin Luther King Jr Center on Thursday.
Tyson’s memoir, “Just as I Am: A Memoir” had just been published Tuesday.
“Cicely thought of her new memoir as a Christmas tree decorated with all the ornaments of her personal and professional life,” wrote manager Thompson.
“Today she placed the last ornament, a Star, on top of the tree.”