89-year-old Vernon Winfrey, Oprah Winfrey’s father, has passed away.
According to a post on Oprah’s Instagram, her father passed away on Friday in Nashville, Tennessee.
“I had the profound distinction of witnessing the man responsible for my life, take his last breath yesterday with family surrounding his bedside,” the media magnate wrote. “A sense of calm entered the room with his death.”
The specifics of the funeral arrangements were not made public right away.
According to a post on Oprah’s Instagram, she surprised her father earlier this week by hosting him a surprise Fourth of July BBQ in Nashville. Celebrating his nearly 50-year career as a barber and ownership of his own business in Nashville, the event was dubbed “Vernon Winfrey Appreciation Day.”
Vernon served as a member of Nashville’s Metro City Council for 16 years and was a trustee of Tennessee State University.
Oprah was raised by her mother, Vernita Lee, in Milwaukee and in Kosciusko, Mississippi, the hometown of her father. During her adolescence, she also resided in Nashville with her father, who took care of her between the ages of 7 and 9.
After being sent to her father when she was 14 years old, Oprah told the Washington Post in 1986, “I would have gone in a different route.” “I think I would have been a decent felon. These same impulses would have been applied differently by me.”
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