Flashback: President Obama awards Maya Angelou a Medal of Freedom

On February 15, 2011, President Barack Obama awarded Dr. Maya Angelou with America’s highest civilian honor — a Presidential Medal of Freedom.

It can’t be exaggerated — the news of Angelou’s passing left a hole in the country’s collective heart.

Angelou was among 15 recipients awarded at a ceremony in the East Room of the White House.

She offered her support for his presidency a year later in an interview with The Guardian: 

I think he has done a remarkable job, knowing how much he has been opposed. Every suggestion he makes, the Republicans en mass fight against him or don’t vote at all.

Dr. Angelou passed away quietly in her home early Wednesday morning, according to a statement from her family. She was 86.

Follow theGrio.com for updates on this Breaking News story