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SAD NEWS: Queen Latifah's Mother Passes Away After Long Struggle With Heart Failure

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After a long struggle with heart failure, Queen Latifah's mother Rita Owens has passed away.  We have her heartfelt statement and her sweet words about being her mother's caregiver inside...


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Rapper/Actress Queen Latifah first opened up about her mother Rita Owen's Scleroderma back in 2014 in a video that they hoped would help out other families battling serious health issues.

Today, Wednesday, the Bessie star said goodbye to her best friend after almost a decade of fighting Ms. Owens' health battle together.

Latifah issued a statement pouring out her heart about her "bright light":

“It is with a heavy heart that I share the news my mother, Rita Owens passed away today,” says Latifah. “Anyone that has ever met her knows what a bright light she was on this earth. She was gentle, but strong, sweet, but sassy, worldy but pragmatic, a woman of great faith and certainly the love of my life.”

“She had struggled with a heart condition for many years and her battle is now over,” Latifah shares. “I am heartbroken but know she is at peace. Thank you for your kindness, support and respect for our privacy at this time. Much Love, Dana Owens (aka Queen Latif‎ah), forever Rita Owens’ daughter.”


The Oscar nominee has teamed up with her mother to share their story on multiple occasions, spreading the word about Ms. Owens' heart failure:

Heart failure is a chronic, progressive condition in which the heart is unable to pump blood efficiently enough to meet the body’s needs. Owens told PEOPLE in 2015 that proper medication, a defibrillator implanted in her chest to avert a heart attack and a diet low in salt and fats but heavy on vegetables enabled her to live with the condition.

The two sat down on camera a few years ago to talk about caregiving and staying on top of the battle:


Latifah's friends Free and Holly Robinson Peete also posted heartfelt messages:


Absolutely heartbreaking.  One is never prepared to lose a parent, grandparent or anyone close, no matter how it happens.  Our hearts and prayers are certainly with Queen Latifah, the Owens family and friends of the family at this time.


Photos: Queen Latifah Show/People




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