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First Annual Essence Black Women In Hollywood Luncheon

TMZ Reports:

Ruby Dee — one of the legendary actresses in Hollywood and on Broadway — died Wednesday night.

Ruby was at home in New Rochelle, NY … surrounded by family when she passed away … according to sources connected to the family. A rep confirmed the death.

Ruby was a pioneer for African-American women in Hollywood … and is perhaps best known for her starring role in the 1960s film “A Raisin in the Sun” — and her roles in the Spike Lee movies “Do the Right Thing” and “Jungle Fever.” Her most recent big budget Hollywood film was “American Gangster” … she played Denzel Washington‘s mother.

Ruby was a poet and screenwriter. She won a Grammy, an Emmy … and also received the National Medal of Arts and the Kennedy Center Honors.

She and her late husband Ossie Davis — with whom she frequently co-starred — were also hugely active in the Civil Rights movement — often demonstrating with Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X.

Ruby was 91 years old.