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April 29, 2019 -- Acclaimed director John Singleton died from a stroke Monday, shortly after his family removed him from life support. Singleton, 51, had the stroke on April 17.

“We are sad to relay that John Singleton has died,” a statement Monday from the Singleton family read. “John passed away peacefully, surrounded by his family and friends.”

Singleton found fame at just 23 years old with his debut feature, 1991’s Boyz N the Hood, for which he was nominated for two Academy Awards -- the youngest ever nominated for best director, and the first African-American writer-director to be nominated. Most recently, he was the co-creator and executive producer of the FX series Snowfall.

Strokes happen when the blood supply to a part of your brain is blocked by a blood clot, or a blood vessel in the brain bursts. Parts of the brain become damaged or die, and every minute counts. Someone in the United States has a stroke every 40 seconds. It kills more than 185,000 Americans each year -- it’s the fifth-leading cause of death -- but many more survive, often with physical disabilities. And it affects African-Americans more than any other racial group in the United States.

Black people are more likely to have a stroke on the younger side, like Singleton. Their risk of having a first stroke is almost double that of white people’s, and they’re twice as likely to die of stroke.

But up to 80% of strokes can be prevented with lifestyle changes and treatment of things that raise your risk of having a stroke, like high blood pressure and diabetes. Singleton’s family said he had high blood pressure.

The odds of survival go up if you seek help quickly, so knowing the symptoms could save your life. The American Stroke Association uses the term “Act FAST” to help you remember:

  • Face drooping
  • Arm weakness
  • Speech difficulty
  • Time to call 911

Show Sources

Entertainment Weekly: “Director John Singleton to be taken off life support after stroke, family says.” ‘Boyz n the Hood’ director John Singleton dies at age 51.”

National Stroke Association: “Recognizing Stroke,” “Minorities and Stroke,” “Understand Stroke.” “John Singleton.”

American Stroke Association: “Stroke Symptoms.”

Time: "Boyz n the Hood Director John Singleton Dies at Age 51 After Stroke."

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