Ossie Davis and his wife, Ruby Dee, were well respected by many before they died. They gained immense recognition for their performances on screen and their spirited activism for African-American human rights and social justice.
Born as Ruby Ann Wallace on October 27, 1922, the actress’s career in Hollywood spanned several decades. She began showcasing her acting skills as a teenager, and to improve her talent; she attended the American Negro Theatre.
OSSIE AND DEE’S JOURNEY AS A COUPLE
In 1946, Ruby got her first big break after appearing in the ANT’s Broadway Production, “Anna Lucasta.” Shortly after the career breakthrough, Dee met Davis, and the pair became romantically involved. Two years later, they walked down the aisle.
Dee and her husband appeared in several TV shows and films together. One of the productions they featured in was “Purlie Victorious.” Apart from making appearances on screen, the couple also joined the Civil Rights Movement and fought for racial equality.
The husband and wife also established friendships with legends like Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X. Even though they found themselves tied down with work, Dee and Davis made sure to create time for their love life and family.
Before their demise, the lovebirds were doting parents to three children, Guy Davis, Nora Day, and Hasna Muhammad Davis. Here are a few facts you might find interesting about the sibling trio.
Like his legendary parents, Guy is no stranger to the spotlight. He is a 69-year-old blues guitarist, songwriter, and banjo player who has collected lots of accolades from fans throughout his career and keeps on performing across the globe.
It is believed that growing up in a family of artists appeared to have impacted Guy’s career choice. At an early age, the star began listening to the likes of Fats Waller and Blind Willie McTell, and not long after, he began making music of his own.
Several of Guy’s songs have made it to Broadway, and he has earned several recognitions, including a Grammy Award nomination. Apart from creating good sound, the icon is also an author, film and television actor, and once had a career as a teacher.
Guy also loves sharing snapshots of himself on social media once in a while. In a post updated on his Facebook page, the songwriter could be seen smiling and holding onto one of his favorite musical instruments— an acoustic guitar.
INSIDE THE LIFE OF NORA DAY DAVIS
Nora appears to have taken after her parents as a dedicated human rights activist. In addition to her fight for equality, Nora is also an educator, which has given her ample opportunity to work with specific students.
For Nora, being an educator comes as no surprise, as she once revealed that education was very important to her parents. Their type of learning encompassed all spheres of life and was not only restricted to school.
Nora, Guy, and Hasna believe that their parents would want them to make it possible for someone to get an education.
Even though Nora and her siblings grew up in a famous home where they saw legends like Sidney Poitier or Harry Belafonte as regular visitors, they were trained like every other child.
Nora said as children, she and her siblings were expected to shovel the snow, clean the bathroom, do their homework, and so on. Today, the education she received as a child appears to have played an essential role in her success story.
In one of the numerous photos of the star, Nora could be seen standing behind a microphone, confidently and happily giving a speech.
Hasna may not be interested in the world of entertainment like her brother, but she loves education like her sister. She is an educator, writer, and photographer. The successful woman has served in various teaching positions as a public school teacher and an administrator.
The world got to witness Hasna’s photography skills during her mother’s funeral. Dee died on June 11, 2014, and her daughter got to say her final goodbye most emotionally.
Hasna was given the honor of lowering the lid of her mother’s coffin. The writer described the experience as an emotional moment, and to preserve that unforgettable moment; she made sure to have her camera in her hand.
While Hasna lowered the lid with one hand, she pressed the shutter with the other— a moment that would be remembered forever. Hasna also loves to inspire her Instagram fans with several pictures and write-ups.
KEEPING THE ACTIVISTS’ LEGACY ALIVE
Ossie and Dee touched many lives with their fights and selfless acts, and when they died, their three children thought the best way to keep their legacy alive was to create a website where they share with the world the lovely moments they spent with their parents.
Also, the website is an avenue to showcase what Ossie and Dee said, believed in, and fought for. Anyone interested in getting more knowledge about Dee and Ossie is encouraged to sign up.
In addition to the website, the sibling trio also founded the Ossie Davis Legacy Scholarship Program. The program, in association with United Negro College Fund, aid college aspirants go to college and get the degree of their choice.
Nora, Guy, and Hasna believe that their parents would want them to make it possible for someone to get an education, a feat that may be difficult.
On December 18, 2017, Ossie would have celebrated his 100th birthday if he had lived till then. However, his children decided to honor him, even in death. To commemorate the occasion, the three siblings updated the website created for their parents with more content.
In addition, they urged fans to share photographs and favorite quotes from Ossie using the hashtag #OssieAndRuby. They also donated to the National Museum of African American History and Culture and The Black Academy of Art and Letters.