*Oprah Winfrey spent part of her weekend shutting down false rumors that her friend Tina Turner had suffered a stroke.
Reports began surfacing Friday that the 74-year-old icon suffered a stroke while at her home in Zurich, Switzerland. However, when a Twitter user asked about the news, Oprah sprung into action to shut the rumor down.
“Tina had a bad flu weeks ago. She’s recovered. And LIVING life! Sent me a single long-stem red rose for my birthday,” Winfrey tweeted.
Turner, who wed longtime boyfriend Erwin Bach last year, has been keeping a low profile in her adopted Switzerland since retiring in 2009.
In Sister 2 Sister magazine, the “America’s Next Top Model” champ reveals her family has been reeling from her 60-year-old dad’s illness, which left him battling language impairment aphasia. His recovery has been slow, but he recently made a breakthrough in his speech struggles.
“He’s getting better. My father had a stroke a year ago, and he’s an extremely healthy guy, so the stroke hit us all by storm,” Eva told Sister 2 Sister. “It came out of nowhere. He had a massive stroke with full aphasia, and it impairs your speech and ability to communicate but not your intellect. So that’s where my dad is now.
“The physical recovery has been amazing. He’s mobile, but his ability to communicate isn’t there. So just the other day I remember my mother and I just cried so many tears of joy because my father said my name for the first time in almost a year and a half… It’s hard for him to get it (the words) out of his head. That’s what aphasia is, so that’s what we’ve been battling with.”
*Gil Noble, the host and producer of influential public affairs show “Like It Is” – which aired on New York’s WABC – died Thursday, April 5, about eight months after suffering from a stroke. He was 80.
Noble’s joined the ABC flagship station in 1967, and soon anchored its weekend newscasts, according to Deadline.
“Like It Is,” which debuted in 1968, created the country’s largest collection of programs and documentaries on African-Americans. He interviewed newsmakers including South Africa President Nelson Mandela and Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe; entertainers Bill Cosby, Harry Belafonte and Lena Horne; sports stars Muhammad Ali and Arthur Ashe; and political figures such as Jesse Jackson and Louis Farrakhan. [Scroll down to watch Noble's interview with Bob Marley.]
His memoir, Black Is The Color Of My TV Tube, was published in 1981.
“Gil Noble’s life and work had a profound effect on our society and culture,” WABC General Manager Dave Davis says. “His contributions are a part of history and will be remembered for years to come.”
Patti Austin performs during the 4th Annual Holiday Tree Lighting at L.A. LIVE & Opening Of L.A. Kings Ice at Nokia Plaza L.A. LIVE on Dec. 2, 2011 in Los Angeles
*In a move that goes against standard practice in the entertainment industry, singer Patti Austin has no problem speaking openly about her decision to undergo gastric bypass surgery in 2005 and gain control of her health.
“That was something that I was in denial about,” Austin tells EURweb exclusively regarding the detrimental effects of being overweight.
Both of Austin’s parents were obese and eventually passed away from diseases linked to excess weight. Her mother died of complications from a stroke; her father of complications from diabetes. Patti was suffering from type 2 diabetes and asthma when her doctor said she was at risk for a stroke and ordered her to have the surgery.
“I went through the process alone. I didn’t claim anything until I had accomplished what I wanted to accomplish with it,” she said of the surgery, which dropped her weight from 300 to about 180 during the first year. “And once I had, I felt that I was sufficiently successful enough to share that with other people.”
*According to Jazzwise Magazine percussionist and composer, Ralph MacDonald, who was one of the most recorded percussionists in jazz, soul and funk as well as a Grammy Award winning songwriter, has died.
MacDonald, who penned the classic R&B tunes “Just the Two of Us” and “Where is the Love,” suffered from a stroke and lung cancer in recent years.
MacDonald, died yesterday (12-18-11) in Stamford, Connecticut.
Born in Harlem in 1944, MacDonald was the son of the well-known Trinidadian calypso musician Macbeth the Great and started playing drums and percussion as a small boy. At 17 he got a job in Harry Belafonte’s steel band playing pans and percussion and stayed with him for ten years, composing Belafonte’s Calypso Carnival album in 1966