Poet, author, professor, civil rights activist, dancer, recording artist and singer Maya Angelou was one of America’s most iconic, inspirational Renaissance women. Born on April 4, 1928 in St. Louis, she emerged as a literary voice with the 1969 publication of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, the first in a series of autobiographical novels. Her life and literary work led to President Obama awarding her the Medal of Freedom in 2011, America’s highest civilian honor. On May 27, 2014, the legend passed away at the age of 86 at her home in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
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