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Oprah Winfrey hosted big Thanksgiving gathering at her Montecito home before her mom's sudden death

Ra'eesah Manack
Nov 28, 2018
10:14 A.M.
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Oprah Winfrey hosted a huge Thanksgiving at her California home. The celebration was just before her mother’s sudden death at 83 years old.

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Oprah Winfrey’s holiday weekend started with a high. Unfortunately, it ended on a low as her mom Vernita Lee died.

Her mom's death was on the same day that the media mogul hosted a big Thanksgiving gathering at her Montecito, California home.

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For the fourth year in a row, Oprah got help from chef Kenny Gilbert to prepare the turkeys. The owner of Gilbert’s Southern Kitchen & Bar came to Winfrey’s house to start the preparations.

They used three smokers outside and the former talk show host revealed in an Instagram video that all she was going to do was "at the end is, add a little garnish.”

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A boisterous Winfrey then posted a video of her welcoming her guests. The video showed alums from her Leadership Academy in South Africa singing as the guests arrived.

“Every time a new girl arrives we sing them home. Makes for an even happier Thanksgiving.”  Oprah wrote on Instagram on Thursday.

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Unfortunately, the happy day ended on a painful note for Oprah. A family member revealed on Monday that her mum Vernita Lee had passed away on the same day as Oprah's party.

Lee died on Thanksgiving at her home in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. It was later revealed that she was laid to rest in a private funeral over the weekend.

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Oprah recently took to Instagram to express her feelings after her mother's death. She accompanied the post with an image of her mum surrounded by her family.

She wrote, " Thank you all for your kind words and condolences regarding my mother Vernita Lee’s passing. It gives our family great comfort knowing she lived a good life and is now at Peace."

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Vernita Lee was born on May 2, 1935. She worked as a housekeeper throughout her life and had a total of four children.  She was 83 years old at the time of her death. 

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Sources believe Oprah bought her mother a luxury condo in Milwaukee. It is also reported that she paid her mother a stipend of $5k a month till she recently passed on.

She lives on through her two surviving daughters Oprah Winfrey and Patricia Amanda Faye Lee.

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