On Monday, the world lost a gem with the passing of Della Reese.
The singer and actress — most known for her role on Touched by an Angel — had a career that spanned over five decades. As the young protégé of Mahalia Jackson, Reese (born Delloreese Patricia Early), was a dynamic multi-talented artist that did everything from guest host The Tonight Show to crack jokes with comedians Richard Pryor and Red Foxx.
Below, see rare photos of Reese on stage and in her element as we remember and honor her legacy.
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Reese on 'The Lively Ones' show during is second season in June 1963.
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Reese with Debbie Allen and Damon Evans on 'Roots: The Next Generation' in Feb 1979.
3 of 15 ABC Photo Archives/Getty Images
Reese with Cleavon Little and Richard Lawson on 'Macgyver' episode from October 14, 1991.
4 of 15 John Springer Collection/Getty Images
Reese performing in the 1950s.
5 of 15 GAB Archive/Getty Images
Reese performing in 1950.
6 of 15 ABC Photo Archives/Getty Images
Reese on 'The Hollywood Palace' on February 22, 1964.
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Reese guest hosting 'The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson' interviewing Muhammad Ali on Nov 3, 1975.
8 of 15 Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Reese in 1960.
9 of 15 ABC Photo Archives/Getty Images
Reese on 'The Love Boat Follies: The Musical' in 1982.
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Reese on television in the 1970s.
11 of 15 Gilles Petard/Getty Images
Reese on stage in 1955.
12 of 15 John D. Kisch/Separate Cinema Archive/Getty Images
Reese in portrait from 1958.
13 of 15 Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
Reese in 1960.
14 of 15 Boris Spremo/Getty Images
In Toronto taping an apperance on the George Kirby show at CFTO-TV in 1972.
15 of 15 Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images
In candid photo from 1960s.
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