Tupac Shakur’s mother, Afeni Shakur, died Monday night at her Sausalito, CA home, according to the New York Daily News. She was 69.
Ms. Shakur’s death is reportedly the result of a possible cardiac arrest, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.
Ms. Shakur, born Alice Faye Williams, joined the Black Panther Party in 1964. The Black Panthers, she told biographer Jasmine Guy, allowed her to channel her rage.
“They educated my mind and gave me direction,” she said.
Ms. Shakur and 20 other Panthers were arrested on April 2, 1969, and charged with several counts of conspiracy to bomb police stations, department stores, and other public places in New York City.
She won her case in May 1971 after successfully defending herself. On June 16, 1971, she gave birth to Tupac Amaru Shakur.
Pac recorded “Dear Mama” in Ms. Shakur’s honor. It was the lead single on his third studio album “Me Against The World.”
Pac described the emotional record as a “love song” to his mama during an interview with MTV’s Bill Bellamy.
“Master T gave me the beat,” Pac explained. “I wrote it in the bathroom, on the toilet like on one of them early morning sit-down sessions. I just wrote it down and it came out like tears. Right after I wrote I called my mom. I rapped it to her over the phone like live. She was crying. I was like that’s a hit. I felt. Lyrically, you listen to ‘Dear Mama,’ the lyrics not tricky. It’s just plain to the point because I wanted people to feel it. I wanted it to be emotional.”
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