Yvonne Staples died at her home in Chicago, according to family friend Bill Carpenter.
Ms. Staples began singing with her family’s act in 1971 and performed on some of their biggest hits, including “Respect Yourself” and “I’ll Take You There.”
“She was very content in that role,” said Mr. Carpenter, the author of “Uncloudy Day: The Gospel Music Encyclopedia.” “She had no desire to be a front singer, even though people in the family told her she had a great voice.”
Ms. Staples was born in Chicago on Oct. 23, 1937, to Oceola and Roebuck Staples, who was known as Pops.
Her father formed the Staple Singers with his children Pervis, Mavis and Cleotha in 1948. They performed in churches in and around Chicago, toured the South and became active in the civil rights movement, traveling with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
The Staple singers are scheduled to be inducted into the Gospel Music Association Hall of Fame on May 8th in Nashville.
Our condolences to the Staple family