Maya Angelou Passes Away At Age 86

By Ian Hoover- 21Alive

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Maya Angelou Passes Away At Age 86

May 28, 2014 Updated May 28, 2014 at 10:31 AM EDT

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C (21Alive) -- Literary icon and poet, Maya Angelou, has died at age 86.

Angelou was an acclaimed writer and became the first African-American woman to become a bestselling author. She made her motion picture directorial debut with "Down In the Delta" in 1998.

Angelou is famous for her seven autobiographies that tell of her struggle to rise from poverty, the first of which was titled "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings."

She received numerous awards through her life, including the Presidential Medal of Arts in 2000.

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