Harry Belafonte “died laughing”, according to his daughter Shari.

The singer, actor, and civil rights activist died of heart failure in April 2023 at the age of 96 and just days ahead of the first anniversary of his death, his daughter Shari – who he had with his first wife Marguerite Belafonte – has revealed the humorous moment she shared with him and his widow Pamela Frank.

She told People: “I know exactly what I said to him. He said, ‘Pam.’ She said, ‘What up, babe?’ He said, ‘Sit me upright.’ So she went over to start sitting him up. And he has a caregiver, so the caregiver said, ‘I’ll get it, Mr. B.’

“So they kept trying to prop him up. He kept going, ‘Higher, higher, higher,’ to the point where he was all the way up. He was bent over. And he said, ‘Higher.’ And I said, ‘Harry, if you were any higher, you’d be sucking on your own.

“And he went, ‘What did you say?’ And we started laughing, and that was it.”

The ‘ Morning Show’ star recalled the last words that she said to her father – who was known for originating the festive track ‘Mary’s Boy Child’ – and then reflected that he lived his life until the “bitter end”, which is something she would like people to take as a “lesson” for themselves.

She said: “And then I said, ‘I love you, Dad.’ And then I left and that was the last conversation we had. I think he lived his life to the bitter end. He was 96 years old. He didn’t have any regrets.

“So I think that’s a lesson to take for most people, is to be true to yourself and go out kicking and screaming, or happy. And do what’s honest for you.”

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