Traci Braxton—singer, radio personality, and reality TV star—has died following a private battle with esophageal cancer. She was 50 years old. The tragic news was confirmed on Saturday (March 12) by her family.
Braxton’s husband, Kevin Surratt, released a statement via email. “We have come to a time where we must inform the public that after a year of privately undergoing a series of treatments for esophageal cancer, our beloved Traci Braxton has gone on to glory,” it reads.
The Braxtons have also released a statement: “It is with the utmost regret that we inform you of the passing of our sister, Traci. Needless to say, she was a bright light, a wonderful daughter, an amazing sister, a loving mother, wife, grandmother, and a respected performer. We will miss her dearly. Traci passed this morning as the snow was falling, our angel is now a snowflake. We ask that you respect our privacy as we plan to send her home with love, celebrating her life. We are family forever. Love, The Braxton Family.”
In a tribute shared on Instagram, Traci’s son, Kevin Jr. expressed, “When I heard the news about my mother being sick first thing she said was I’m going to fight and beat this. She fought to the end and today she’s at peace. I love my mother forever and this hurts so much but I’m at peace knowing she’s isn’t in pain anymore. I love you ma I’m going to miss you.”
Traci Renee Braxton was born on April 2, 1971, in Severn, Maryland. She grew up in the church as a choir member alongside her sisters, Toni, Tamar, Towanda, and Trina. In 1989, they formed the R&B quintet, “The Braxtons.” Yet, when Toni was signed as a solo artist in 1991, Traci and their sisters joined her as background singers on her first tour. In 1996, Traci took a break from music to become a mother.
In 2011, all five sisters and their mother, Evelyn reunited for the hit WEtv reality series, Braxton Family Values. The show ran for seven seasons. Traci became a favorite among fans for her humor and honesty, which led her to become a radio personality on BLIS.FM’s The Traci Braxton Show in 2013. With her newfound fame, Traci returned to music with her 2014 album, Crash & Burn, that peaked No. 14 on the Billboard R&B Albums chart and 2018’s On Earth. Her single, “Last Call,” peaked No. 14 on the U.S. Adult R&B chart and she reunited with her sisters musically for 2018’s “Broken Things.”
Traci also got her break into the acting world and starred in a stage play, There’s a Stranger in My House (2017), and two films, Sinners Wanted (2018) and All In (2019).
Traci is survived by her parents, Evelyn and Michael, her four sisters and older brother, Michael Braxton Jr., her husband, Kevin, her son, Kevin Jr., and grandson Kevin Surratt III.
VIBE sends our deepest condolences to the Braxton and Surratt families at this time.