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Oprah Winfrey’s Mom Dies on Thanksgiving at Age 83

Oprah Winfrey

TMZ is reporting that Vernita Lee, mother to Oprah Winfrey, has died at the age of 83.

The gossip site reported that Oprah’s niece, Alisha Hayes, posted that Lee passed away on Thanksgiving Day. The family confirmed her death to TMZ.

Vernita was born in 1935 in segregated Mississippi. She met Vernon Winfrey and they gave birth to Oprah in 1954.

Lee was born on May 2, 1935 and worked as a housekeeper throughout her life. She is survived by Winfrey and daughter Patricia Amanda Faye Lee, who she gave up for adoption at birth and reconnected with later in life. Lee also had two other children — son Jeffrey Lee, who died in 1989 and daughter Patricia Lee Lloyd, who died in 2003.

A spokesperson for Winfrey says her mother has already been laid to rest at a private funeral.

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