“Elvis” actress and musical artist Shonka Dukureh’s cause of death has been revealed following the discovery of her body last month in her Nashville home.
The Davidson County Medical Examiner’s office noted following an autopsy that the official cause of death was hypertensive and atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, the Los Angeles Times reported on Wednesday.
The Metro Nashville Police Department reported last month that there was no suspicion of foul play when officers found Dukureh’s body in the apartment she shared with her two young children.
Dukureh was found unresponsive by one of her children on July 21. She told a neighbor who called 911 to report the information.
The actress recently became well-known for her role as Big Mama Thornton in Warner Brothers’ “Elvis.” Her voice of the classic song “Hound Dog” hit theaters just one month before her death.
The actress and musician held a degree in theater from Fisk University and a degree in education from Trevecca Nazarene. Well-known in the Nashville area, Dukureh sang in many churches across the city from when she was young.
As a musical artist, Dukureh worked with a variety of top talent, including Nick Cave, Mike Farris, Pete Rock, and Smoke Dza, according to Rolling Stone. The singer had also performed with Doja Cat at Coachella.
Dukureh was also an advocate for education. She worked as a second-grade teacher and served as an after-school program leader.
Her July death was mourned among many leaders, fans, and friends at the time, as The Daily Wire previously reported.
“My deepest condolences to the family of Shonka Dukureh. Shonka graduated from @Fisk1866 and called Nashville home for many years,” Nashville Mayor John Cooper (D) tweeted. “Her powerful voice and artistry will live on through her music, and we honor her memory on this sad day.”
My deepest condolences to the family of Shonka Dukureh. Shonka graduated from @Fisk1866 and called Nashville home for many years. Her powerful voice and artistry will live on through her music, and we honor her memory on this sad day. https://t.co/0rjZ0lLWCg
— Mayor John Cooper (@JohnCooper4Nash) July 21, 2022
“A special light went out today and all of the Elvis movie family are heartbroken by the loss of Shonka Dukureh,” “Elvis” director Baz Luhrmann wrote on Instagram.
“From the moment she came into our world, Shonka brought joy, spirit and of course her voice and her music. Whenever she was on set, on stage or even just in the room, everyone always felt uplifted. Shonka was just starting to find a larger audience for her tremendous talent, and I got to see her uplift whole crowds of people at Coachella and beyond.”
“A favorite word of Shonka’s, in daily use, was ‘blessings,’ and I, along with the entire Elvis cast, crew and musical collaborators, feel truly blessed to have had time with her,” he added.
Grammy Award-winning artist Doja Cat also shared a tribute upon hearing of Dukureh’s death.
“Rest in Peace Shonka—an incredible talent taken from us too soon,” Doja Cat, whose song for the film “Vegas” featured Dukureh, shared on Instagram Stories. “Was a true honor getting to know her and I am so grateful to her for lending her incredible vocals to ‘Vegas.’ Her amazing performance in Elvis amongst her other artistry will live on. Sending my deepest condolences to her loved ones.”