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Actress Erica Watson who appeared in Precious and Empire dies of Covid aged just 48

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Erica Watson
Erica Watson, an actress and comedienne who appeared in Precious and Empire, has died of Covid at the age of 48 (Pictures: Erica Watson/Getty)

A successful actress and comedienne whose work included a role in hit movie Precious has died of Covid aged just 48. Erica Watson was killed by the virus on Saturday, her family said. The Chicago-born performer had been living in Jamaica when she fell ill.

Erica’s first big role was as Sheila in 2009 movie Precious, which tells the story of an abused teen’s attempts to transform her life. She also scored parts in action drama Chicago Fire in 2015, as well as two appearances on hit TV series Empire, which tells the story of the powerful family behind a fictional record label.

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Erica’s agent April Williams was among those who paid tribute to her. Williams told CBS Chicago: ‘Erica was loved and adored by just so many people. She had such a vibrant, vivacious spirit. I really hope and am praying that she knew what a gem to Chicago she was and how proud we were of her.’

Cook County Attorney General Kim Foxx – whose patch includes Chicago – also remembered Erica on Twitter.

She wrote: ‘I’m sorry to hear about the passing of Erica Watson. Erica was a talented, bright light.

‘With every conversation, she made you feel as if you had been friends for years, even if you had only met virtually. I send my prayers to her friends and family.’

In recent years, Erica had become a popular guest on local talk show Windy City Live, where she shared details of her move to Jamaica. Friends remembered Erica as ‘selfless’ and keen to give others a platform.

They also paid tribute to her ‘infectious demeanor’ and ability to ‘make everyone around her feel loved.’

The US has now recorded more than 28.6 million Covid cases, and over 513,000 deaths.

More than 75.2 million vaccine doses have been administered across the US, an average of 1.74 million a day, according to Bloomberg News.

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