Dee, who won acclaim in films, theater and television and
along with her late husband actor Ossie Davis, was a notable
figure in the U.S. civil rights movement.
Through her performances, President Barack Obama said, the
petite actress "paved the way for generations of black actors
and actresses and inspired African-American women across our
The memorial service - at the Riverside Church in Manhattan on
Sept. 20 - will include songs, tributes and reflections from
family and colleagues of Dee, who was nominated for an Oscar for
her role in "American Gangster" and won an Emmy in 1991 for the
TV movie "Decoration Day."
"Ruby was a extraordinary life force," Terrie Williams, a
spokeswoman for the family said. "People were very connected to
her and to Ozzie."
She added that Dee managed to successfully use her art and
activism, without compromising who she was, and her visibility
to make a difference.
"Those are the key reasons she is being celebrated," Williams
A private service followed Dee's death on June 11. The memorial
will be open to the public.
(Reporting by Patricia Reaney; Editing by Eric Kelsey and Steve
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