Dead: Yolanda King Daughter of Martin Luther King Jr. at 51


By: CJ
Staff Writer

King_Yolanda2_martin_luther_king.jpgLess than a year and a half after the death of Coretta Scott King, widow of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr comes the untimely death of their eldest daughter Yolanda King. The 51 year old collapsed and died after making a speech late Tuesday in Santa Monica, California. The cause of death is currently unknown.

Former Mayor Andrew Young, who worked with her father in the civil rights movement and is a close family friend, recounts that Yolanda King had just spoken at an event for the American Heart Association. She was helping the association raise awareness, especially among blacks, about stroke. After the event, the California resident was on her way to her brother Dexter's home when she collapsed in the doorway and "they were not able to revive her," Young said.

In an official statement following her death, the King family noted that "She was an actress, author, producer, advocate for peace and non-violence, who was known and loved for her motivational and inspirational contributions to society." These accolades are fitting of Yolanda King who pursued her father's dream of racial harmony. She was an actress, ran a production company and appeared in several films, including "Ghosts of Mississippi."

Yolanda Denise King was born Nov. 17, 1955, in Montgomery, Ala., where her father was then preaching. Her brother Martin III was born in 1957; brother Dexter in 1961; and sister Bernice in 1963.