The iconic actress died on Jan. 28 at the age of 96

By Georgia Slater
February 04, 2021 09:14 AM
Cicely Tyson

An official public viewing has been set for legendary actress Cicely Tyson, who died last week at the age of 96.

Tyson's family announced Wednesday that the viewing will be held on Feb. 15 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET at the Abyssinian Baptist Church in New York City. The announcement was shared by Tyson's longtime manager, Larry Thompson, USA Today reported.

The icon will lie in repose at the church where she first became a member 20 years ago, according to CBS New York.

COVID-19 protocols will be in place at the viewing, with mask-wearing and social distancing requirements. No photography will be allowed, according to the statement.

Rev. Calvin Butts, who got to know Tyson through her time at the church, told CBS New York that the groundbreaking actress was at the place of worship just days before her death.

"She was full of life. She looked good. She was chuckling at different things, and she was just a wonderful, wonderful lady," he said.

Cicely Tyson in December 2018
| Credit: Gary Gershoff/Getty Images

Last Thursday, Tyson's manager confirmed the news of the actress's death in a statement, saying, "I have managed Miss Tyson's career for over 40 years, and each year was a privilege and blessing."

"Cicely thought of her new memoir as a Christmas tree decorated with all the ornaments of her personal and professional life," he continued. "Today she placed the last ornament, a star, on top of the tree."

Tyson starred in decades of film and television including the notable 1972 drama Sounder, for which she received an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress and The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman, which earned her two Emmy awards, as well as Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All.

For more on Cicely Tyson, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE on newsstands Friday.

In 2018, she became the first Black woman to receive an honorary Oscar. Two years later, she was selected for the Peabody Career Achievement Award for her work on the stage, in film and on television.

Not only did the New York-born actress appear on screen, but she also starred on Broadway, including in The Trip to Bountiful, which earned her the 2013 Tony Award for best performance by an actress in a leading role in a play, and her latest stage appearance in The Gin Game.

She continued to play strong women in 2011's The Help, the TV series How to Get Away with Murder opposite Viola Davis, House of Cards, and in several Tyler Perry movies including Madea's Family Reunion and Diary of a Mad Black Woman.