Legendary jazz singer, Maria Cole, widow of Nat "King" Cole, passed away Tuesday after a short battle with cancer.
"Our mom was in a class all by herself. She epitomized, class, elegance, and truly defined what it is to be a real lady. We are so blessed and privileged to have inherited the legacy that she leaves behind along with our father. She died how she lived - with great strength, courage and dignity, surrounded by her loving family."
After her husband’s death in 1965, Maria created the Cole Cancer Foundation.
For the past 40+ years, she's been committed to raising money to find a cure for cancer — the disease that took her husband’s life in 1965 and eventually her own.
She was truly an inspiring woman.
She will be missed.
[Image via the Cole family]