Tracey Davis, author and daughter of Sammy Davis Jr., dead at 59

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Author Tracey Davis, daughter of legendary entertainer Sammy Davis Jr. and actress May Britt, has died at age 59.

Davis' ex-husband Guy Garner confirmed the news to The Associated Press that Davis died in Franklin, Tennessee, on Nov. 2 after a short illness. However, an official cause of death is not yet determined.

Davis penned the 1996 book "Sammy Davis Jr.: My Father" about her journey to reconnect with her dad later in life as an adult. The book discussed how, due to his career and rise to stardom, Sammy Davis Jr. was largely absent from her childhood years. It was co-written with Dolores A. Barclay, a former editor at the AP.

She wrote a second book, “Sammy Davis Jr.: A Personal Journey With My Father,” in 2014. In her books, she wrote about her father's experiences encountering racism throughout his career.

Tracey Davis, daughter of Sammy Davis Jr. died at age 59.
(Ethan Miller/Getty Images for Tropicana)

MGM announced plans last month to develop a Sammy Davis Jr. biopic based on Davis' first book, produced by Lena Waithe, according to Variety.

“I am thrilled to know my father’s life, both private and public, will be brought to the big screen with this team of storytellers,” Davis said in a statement when the deal was announced. “He and my mother May Britt took on the world, choosing love and compassion over hatred and bigotry, and I am a product of that decision."


Davis, who had a professional career in television and advertising, is survived by her four children, her mother, and her brothers.


“She loved and adored her kids more than anything. Needless to say, they are all shocked and devastated by the loss of their mother, as are Tracey’s mother, May Britt Ringquist and her brothers, Mark and Jeff,” Garner said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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