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Dear Mama: Tupac’s mother Afeni Shakur dead at 69

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Producer Afeni Shakur attends the film premiere of 'Tupac Resurrection' at the Cinerama Dome Theater on November 4, 2003 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

MARIN COUNTY, California — Tupac Shakur’s mother Afeni Shakur Davis died Monday night in Marin County, California, the sheriff’s office confirmed via Twitter. Afeni Shakur was 69 years old.

Deputies responded to reports of a possible cardiac arrest at Shakur’s home in Sausalto, a sheriff’s office spokesperson said. Shakur was taken to the hospital where she died.

“Sheriff’s Coroners Office will lead investigation to determine exact cause and manner of Afeni Shakur’s death,” the sheriff’s office spokesperson said.

Afeni Shakur Davis was a member of the infamous “Panther 21,” CBS News reported.

A native of North Carolina, Davis first gained prominence as one of 21 members of the Black Panther party put on trail in New York in 1969 for allegedly plotting to shoot and bomb two New York City police stations and an education center. It was at the time the most expensive trial in New York history and ended with an acquittal of all defendants.

She gave birth to two children, most famously Lesane Parish Crooks in June of 1971, who was later known as Tupac Shakur. Tupac’s dad, Billy Garland, had been acquitted with Davis in the Panther 21 trial just a month before he was born.

Later in her life, Afeni managed her late son’s music catalog and founded a philanthropic group, USA Today reported.

Tupac wrote Dear Mama, off his 1995 album Me Against the World, as a tribute to his mom.

Dear Mama

    When I was young me and my mama had beef
    Seventeen years old kicked out on the streets
    Though back at the time, I never thought I’d see her face
    Ain’t a woman alive that could take my mama’s place
    Suspended from school, and scared to go home, I was a fool
    With the big boys, breaking all the rules
    I shed tears with my baby sister
    Over the years we was poorer than the other little kids
    And even though we had different daddy’s, the same drama
    When things went wrong we’d blame mama
    I reminisce on the stress I caused, it was hell
    Hugging on my mama from a jail cell
    And who’d think in elementary?
    Hey! I see the penitentiary, one day
    And running from the police, that’s right
    Mama catch me, put a whooping to my backside
    And even as a crack fiend, mama
    You always was a black queen, mama
    I finally understand
    For a woman it ain’t easy trying to raise a man
    You always was committed
    A poor single mother on welfare, tell me how ya did it
    There’s no way I can pay you back
    But the plan is to show you that I understand
    You are appreciated

    Lady
    Don’t ya know we love ya? Sweet lady
    Dear mama
    Place no one above ya, sweet lady
    You are appreciated
    Don’t ya know we love ya?

    Now ain’t nobody tell us it was fair
    No love from my daddy cause the coward wasn’t there
    He passed away and I didn’t cry, cause my anger
    Wouldn’t let me feel for a stranger
    They say I’m wrong and I’m heartless, but all along
    I was looking for a father he was gone
    I hung around with the Thugs, and even though they sold drugs
    They showed a young brother love
    I moved out and started really hanging
    I needed money of my own so I started slanging
    I ain’t guilty cause, even though I sell rocks
    It feels good putting money in your mailbox
    I love paying rent when the rent’s due
    I hope ya got the diamond necklace that I sent to you
    ‘Cause when I was low you was there for me
    And never left me alone because you cared for me
    And I could see you coming home after work late
    You’re in the kitchen trying to fix us a hot plate
    Ya just working with the scraps you was given
    And mama made miracles every Thanksgiving
    But now the road got rough, you’re alone
    You’re trying to raise two bad kids on your own
    And there’s no way I can pay you back
    But my plan is to show you that I understand
    You are appreciated

    Lady
    Don’t ya know we love ya? Sweet lady
    And dear mama
    Place no one above ya, sweet lady
    You are appreciated
    Don’t ya know we love ya?

    Pour out some liquor and I reminisce, cause through the drama
    I can always depend on my mama
    And when it seems that I’m hopeless
    You say the words that can get me back in focus
    When I was sick as a little kid
    To keep me happy there’s no limit to the things you did
    And all my childhood memories
    Are full of all the sweet things you did for me
    And even though I act crazy
    I gotta thank the Lord that you made me
    There are no words that can express how I feel
    You never kept a secret, always stayed real
    And I appreciate, how you raised me
    And all the extra love that you gave me
    I wish I could take the pain away
    If you can make it through the night there’s a brighter day
    Everything will be alright if ya hold on
    It’s a struggle everyday, gotta roll on
    And there’s no way I can pay you back
    But my plan is to show you that I understand
    You are appreciated

    Lady
    Don’t ya know we love ya? Sweet lady
    And dear mama
    Place no one above ya, sweet lady
    You are appreciated
    Don’t ya know we love ya?

    Sweet lady
    And dear mama

    Dear mama
    Lady, lady, lady