Jamie Foxx recently took to Instagram to pay tribute to his late grandmother on what would’ve been her birthday. The woman, Estelle Marie Talley, raised Foxx to be the man he is today, and his death 15 years ago left him devastated.
Jamie Foxx is a family man, and he has proved that by taking care of his daughters, their mothers, his sisters, stepfather, and even his estranged mom, who abandoned him when he was only seven months.
That love and kindness were instilled in him by his grandma, Estelle Talley, also known as Miz Talley to her family and friends.
On May 7, Foxx took to Instagram to remember Miz Tally on her birthday, sharing a throwback pic of them taken many years ago.
“My rock... Miss u always... #iwishyouwerehere happy birthday. Estelle Marie Talley,” Foxx captioned the post.
Mrs. Talley passed away in 2004 in her home in Terrell, Texas. She was 95.
Jamie, who was fresh from his success as Ray Charles in the film “Ray,” returned home for the funeral, but he was so devastated that he couldn’t even deliver a eulogy.
“She was my buddy. You know what I'm saying? If you could go to heaven right now And say, 'Where is Estelle Talley' Do that interview. Because that's who knows me. Nobody else." He told GQ at the time. "Nobody else."
Miz Talley embraced Jamie as a baby when his mother Louise split from her father and couldn’t handle to raise a child alone. Estelle was the only mother Jamie ever knew, and for that, he’s eternally grateful.
It was Miz Talley who signed Jamie up for piano lessons. She would drive once a week to north Dallas to his piano classes, as she believed knowing about music was a way out for Jamie, if he ever needed one
Talley also dragged her grandson to church every week at Bethlehem Baptist, where Jamie would become the star of the choir.
It was also Miz Talley who sewed a red jacket with zippers, just like Michael Jackson's, when Jamie begged for one.
"I wanted that jacket so bad. And my grandmother said, 'I ain't gonna spend all this money on that damn jacket!' So she made the jacket,” he recalled.
“But it was so horrible. It looked so bad. It was the worst. And she made me wear it. I had to play for a wine and cheese party at this really nice area, and I was like 14, and she made me wear the damn Michael Jackson suit. And they took a picture of me, and it ended up in the papers. I felt so bad."
Eventually, the piano lessons paid off and another church, New Hope Baptist, started paying Jamie $75 a week to play for them. However, Miz Talley would keep the checks while Jamie whined about “how mean his granny was.”
But when the time came to buy Jamie’s first car, she handed him the $3,000 she had saved up for him.
"People ask me," says Jamie, "would I give up everything to have a relationship with my biological mother and father? And the answer is no. Because as a parent now, I understand that it's really on you. If you want to make your relationship with your kids something great, you can do it."
And continues, "But would I trade everything I have now for the relationship with my daughter? The answer is yes." It was Miz Talley who taught him that.