Losing a parent can be one of the most devastating experiences, and sadly media maven Oprah Winfrey is currently experiencing that grief following the death of her father, Vernon Winfrey, just days after hosting a Fourth of July barbecue to honor his longstanding career as a barber.
Oprah’s last two posts on Instagram (seen above) are polarizing in comparison to each other, with one showing thanks for being able to give her dad his flowers “while he’s still well enough to smell them” and the other eulogizing him shortly after he passed away.
“He FELT the love and reveled in it until he could no longer speak,” Oprah wrote of the late Mr. Winfrey, also adding in her caption, “Yesterday with family surrounding his bedside, I had the sacred honor of witnessing the man responsible for my life, take his last breath. We could feel Peace enter the room at his passing.” Her words are accompanied by a video of gospel singer Wintley Phipps serenading Vernon at the appreciation BBQ, making for a touching moment that’s equally heartwarming as it is heartbreaking.
More on the life of Vernon Winfrey below, via AP News:
“Vernon served as a member of Nashville’s Metro City Council for 16 years and was a trustee for the Tennessee State University.
Oprah spent her early childhood at her father’s hometown of Kosciusko, Mississippi, and in Milwaukee with her mother, Vernita Lee, who died in 2018. However, she also lived with her father in Nashville, between the ages of 7 and 9 and during her teens.
‘If I hadn’t been sent to my father (when I was 14), I would have gone in another direction,’ Oprah told the Washington Post in 1986. ‘I could have made a good criminal. I would have used these same instincts differently.'”
Through his work as both a former councilman and neighborhood barber, Vernon Winfrey proved to be a consummate community-driven man throughout his 89 years of life. Our prayers are without a doubt with Oprah and all that he touched in this world.
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