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Maya Angelou, Poet & Author, Dies at Age 86

(Photo by Kris Connor/Getty Images)

Maya Angelou, author of ‘I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings,’ died at her home in North Carolina on Wednesday morning. She was 86.

Angelou was a confidante to presidents and celebrities, the recipient of more than 30 honorary degrees, a civil rights activist and, despite a life that was filled with some great suffering, an optimist.

As one of her more famous quotes goes, “You are the sum total of everything you’ve ever seen, heard, eaten, smelled, been told, forgot—it’s all there. Everything influences each of us, and because of that I try to make sure that my experiences are positive.”

One of my favorite quotes by Maya Angelou:

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

And I love this one, too:

“One isn’t necessarily born with courage, but one is born with potential. Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can’t be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest.”

Rest in Peace, beautiful soul.

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