Camille Olivia Cosby is an American television producer, author and the wife of comedian Bill Cosby. The character of Clair Huxtable from The Cosby Show was based on her. Camille was born Camille Olivia Hanks on March 20, 1944, in Washington D. C. to Guy A. Hanks Sr. and Catherine C. Hanks, she grew up in Norbeck, just outside Washington. She is the oldest of four children and is a distant cousin of Nancy Hanks Lincoln, mother of United States President Abraham Lincoln. Through Lincoln, she is a distant cousin of American actor Tom Hanks. Cosby's father was a chemist at her mother worked at a nursery. Both of Cosby's parents had college educations, with her father earning a graduate degree from Fisk University and her mother earning an undergraduate degree from Howard University. Cosby attended private Catholic schools. First, she attended. After high school, Cosby studied psychology at the University of Maryland. While a student there, she went on a blind date during her sophomore year with Bill Cosby.
Engaged shortly after they started dating, the pair married on January 25, 1964. Following their marriage and her husband had five children: Erika, Ennis and Evin. Ennis was murdered on January 16, 1997 at age 27, her daughter Ensa died February 2018 of renal disease while awaiting a kidney transplant. She was 44. Cosby acted as manager for her husband and has been depicted as a "shrewd businesswoman." During an interview with Ebony Magazine, Bill Cosby stated, "People would rather deal with me than with Camille. She's rough to deal with when it comes to my business." She "helps in the development of her husband's material", including suggestions for The Cosby Show, such as suggesting the Huxtable family be middle rather than working class. Cosby has been a supporter of African American literature. In 1993, she wrote the foreword for Thelma Williams' Our Family Table: Recipes And Food Memories From African-american Life Models. In 2009, Cosby wrote the foreword for Dear Success Seeker: Wisdom from Outstanding Women by Dr. Michele R. Wright.
In 2014, she did the foreword for The Man from Essence: Creating a Magazine for Black Women, a book by Edward Lewis of Essence. In 1994, Cosby released Television's Imageable Influences: The Self-Perception of Young African-Americans, a book that "dramatically charts the damaging impact of derogatory images of African Americans produced in our media establishments." The book was intended to be the subject of her thesis for her doctorate degree. In 2001, Cosby worked with David C. Driskell for his book The Other Side of Color: African American Art in the Collection of Camille O. and William H. Cosby Jr. which focused on the Cosby's art collection. Together and Renee Poussaint edited A Wealth of Wisdom: Legendary African American Elders Speak in 2004. Cosby was co producer for the Broadway play Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters' First 100 Years, based on the book Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters' First 100 Years by Sarah "Sadie" L. Delany and A. Elizabeth "Bessie" Delany with Amy Hill Hearth.
Following the success of the show, Cosby acquired the film and television rights to the story and acted as executive producer for the 1999 made-for-television movie of the same name. In June 1987, Howard University in Washington, D. C. presented Cosby with a Doctor of an honorary doctoral degree. In 1990, Cosby earned a master's degree from the University of Massachusetts, followed by a Ph. D. in 1992. In an interview with Oprah Winfrey, Cosby stated, "I became keenly aware of myself in my mid thirties. I went through a transition. I decided to go back to school, because I had dropped out of college to marry Bill when I was 19. I had five children, I decided to go back. I didn't feel fulfilled educationally. I dropped out of school at the end of my sophomore year. So I went back, when I did, my self-esteem grew. I got my master's decided to get my doctoral degree. Education helped me to come out of myself." Cosby's history of philanthropy includes donations to educational foundations. Her philanthropic memberships include Operation PUSH, The United Negro College Fund, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, the National Council of Negro Women, Jesse Jackson's National Rainbow Coalition.
Beginning in the start of the 1980s, Cosby and her husband donated $100,000 to Central State University, a black university in Ohio, with a gift of $325,000 following in 1987. In September 1989, CSU held the "Camille and Bill Cosby Cleveland Football Classic" in honor of their contributions to the school. In January 1987, the Cosbys donated $1.3 million to Fisk University. In November 1988, they donated $20 million to Atlanta's Spelman College, a women's college with a predominantly Black enrollment. According to The New York Times, the gift was the largest donation to a black college in American history; the college has since named the five story 92,000 square foot Camille Olivia Hanks Cosby Academic Center after Cosby. A few months after the Spellman donation and her husband donated $800,000 to Meharry Medical College as well as $750,000 to Bethune-Cookman University. In July 1992, during a gala held at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the National Coalition of 100 Black Women awarded Cosby the Candace Award, a recognition of minority women that have made valuable contributions to their communities.
In April 2005, Cosby donated $2 million to Saint Frances Academy of Baltimore High School. Because of the donation, the school was able to endow 16 scholarships in Cosby's
A Different World
A Different World is an American sitcom that aired for six seasons on NBC from September 24, 1987 to July 9, 1993. The series centered on Denise Huxtable and the life of students at Hillman College, a fictional black college in Virginia, it was inspired by student life at black colleges and universities. After Bonet's departure in the first season, the remainder of the series focused more on Southern belle Whitley Gilbert and math whiz Dwayne Wayne. While it was a spin-off from The Cosby Show, A Different World addressed issues that were avoided by The Cosby Show writers. One episode that aired in 1990 was one of the first American network television episodes to address the HIV/AIDS epidemic; the original premise was to have a white student there and have Lena Horne as an acting teacher, but in production, the premise changed from being a story about a white girl in a black college to a black girl in a black college with a white friend. It was decided that Denise, of college age, would be spun off and have a white roommate in order to show the dynamic of a white girl in predominantly black surroundings.
Meg Ryan was cast for this role, but she decided to pursue a film career, so Marisa Tomei was cast. The first season of Hillman's student body consisted of both black and white students, but this was changed at the beginning of the second season and a predominantly black student body maintained until the series ended. After the first season, it came to Cosby's and the producers' attention that the series was not portraying a black college and life on campus, so Debbie Allen, an alumna of Howard University, was hired as the chief creative force to revamp the show. During the summer of 1988, Lisa Bonet announced that she and husband Lenny Kravitz were having a baby. Allen was in favor of having a young pregnant student in the show, but Cosby said that Lisa Bonet may be pregnant but not Denise Huxtable, it was felt that viewers would not accept Denise as an unwed mother, having grown to know her as a "good girl" after four seasons of The Cosby Show. Thus it was decided that Denise would drop out of Hillman, return home to her family, travel to Africa throughout the fifth season of The Cosby Show, ensuring that viewers would not see a pregnant Denise.
Allen was in favor of keeping Tomei, as she herself recalls a white student at Howard and wanted to relate that in the show and had possible premises for her character, such as meeting Dwayne's parents and seeing the other side of racism. However, Tomei left the show, she and Marie-Alise Recasner were replaced by Cree Summer and Charnele Brown, respectively. Darryl M. Bell and Sinbad were promoted to the principal cast, Glynn Turman and Lou Myers were added as supporting cast members; these changes led to the placement of Whitley and Dwayne at the center of a wider ensemble, dealing with more relevant issues of the day. Cory Tyler as Terrence Taylor Patrick Malone as Terrell Walker Bumper Robinson as Dorian Heywood Michael Ralph as Spencer Boyer, various characters Gary Dourdan as Shazza Zulu Marie-Alise Recasner as Millie Andrew Lowery as Matthew Kim Wayans as Allison Alisa Gyse Dickens as Kinu Owens Jenifer Lewis as Dean Dorothy Dandridge Davenport Diahann Carroll as Marion Gilbert Patti LaBelle as Adele Wayne Roger Guenveur Smith as Prof. Howard Randolph Rosalind Cash as Dean Hughes Ron O'Neal as Mercer Gilbert Phylicia Rashad as Clair Huxtable Jonell Green as Dashawn Curtis Bill Cosby as Cliff Huxtable Keshia Knight Pulliam as Rudy Huxtable Robert Guillaume as Dean Winston and Professor Murphy Harold Sylvester as Woodson Wayne Malcolm-Jamal Warner as Theo Huxtable Vanessa Bell Calloway as Lily Connors & Jaleesa's sister Tisha Campbell-Martin as Josie Webb Nestor Carbonell as Malik Velasquez Art Evans as Mr. Johnson IMx as Whitley's students Richard Roundtree as Clinton Reese Halle Berry as Jaclyn The Boys as Mice 2 Men Dean Cain as Brian Wayne Federman as A&M Wolf Ernie Sabella as Campus Security En Vogue as Faith, Hope and Henrietta Whoopi Goldberg as Dr. Jordan David Alan Grier as Professor Byron Walcott James Avery as bowler Alfonso Ribeiro as Zach Duncan Heavy D as himself Lena Horne as herself Jesse Jackson as himself Trina McGee as Gennifer Khandi Alexander as Theressa Stone Gladys Knight as herself Kris Kross as Dwayne's juvenile mentees Tupac Shakur as Piccolo Obba Babatundé as Frank Blair Underwood as Zelme
Bill Cosby 77
Bill Cosby 77 is an unreleased 2014 stand-up comedy film featuring Bill Cosby, filmed before a live audience at the San Francisco Jazz Center in California. Cosby chose his establishment the hungry i; the comedian said his wife. Around sixty minutes in duration, the film features Cosby pontificating on matters of children and matrimony; the film was named because was taped on Cosby's 77th birthday on July 12, 2014. Cosby chose Netflix to release the performance because it would be able to be seen by viewers without interruptions for advertisements. On August 14, 2014, Netflix announced that Bill Cosby 77 would be made available to its subscribers on November 28, 2014. Netflix intended for the program to be available from the day after Thanksgiving in the United States. On November 18, 2014, Netflix announced; the announcement by Netflix came a matter of hours after Janice Dickinson publicly added her name to a list of women who alleged that Cosby had sexually assaulted and raped them. Bill Cosby turned 77 years old on July 12, 2014.
The same day, Bill Cosby 77 was filmed live in California during his performance at the San Francisco Jazz Center. In August 2014, in an interview with The Patriot Ledger, Cosby explained why he selected the San Francisco Jazz Center as the venue for the performance: "We taped at the SFJazz Center, because San Francisco was the city that put me on the map."Cosby stated that he had driven to San Francisco from Philadelphia in 1962 and encountered Enrico Banducci at an establishment called the hungry i. Cosby commented: "The new special is a tribute to the hungry i, an amazing two hundred seat venue that you were lucky to play, to Banducci, to San Francisco. I've always loved that city, because of the great weather and because the people are loose but always well mannered."Cosby remarked that his wife Camille Cosby helped with editing of the film: "My wife is my editor. Trust is what it is called, but it is fear, it all goes to that one fundamental truth about marriage: the wife is in charge."
The film was directed by Robert Townsend. The running time of the film is about 60 minutes; the contents of the program include Cosby discussing children, the bonds of matrimony, romantic associations between individuals. Netflix marketed the film with the summary: "Bill Cosby invites you to share his birthday and 77 years of laughs and hilarious insights about his childhood, first loves and parenthood." The film was named as a way to honor Bill Cosby in order to recognize his age, the fact that it was taped on his birthday. United Press International reported that Cosby chose Netflix to release the film, because he was enticed by the prospect of his viewers being able to watch the film without interruption for advertisements, hoped this would provide an enhanced rhythm to the show. On August 14, 2014, Netflix announced that Bill Cosby 77 would be made available to its subscribers on November 28. Netflix intended for the program to be made available from the day after Thanksgiving in the United States.
After its announcement, Cosby posted to Twitter: "I thank @Netflix for this opportunity to show my talent all around the internet." Netflix made public its decision on November 18 to delay release of the film. The announcement by Netflix came within hours after Janice Dickinson publicly added her name to the list women who alleged that Cosby had sexually assaulted and raped them. Dickinson said; the Washington Post reported that the assertions by multiple women stating Cosby sexually assaulted them contributed to decisions by both Netflix and NBC to cease production or delay projects with Cosby. Dickinson asserted both Cosby and his lawyers had pressured her to remove mention of the incident from her book of 2002, No Lifeguard on Duty. CNN reported that as of November 20, 2014, Bill Cosby 77 was listed with status of "coming soon". Netflix released a statement to the press which said: "At this time we are postponing the launch of the new stand up comedy special'Bill Cosby 77.'" CNN attempted to get an additional explanation from Netflix but reported on November 20, 2014 that a representative for Netflix refused to provide additional information as to why the film was postponed from release.
Media reported that Cosby was in agreement with the decision by Netflix to delay release of the film. In January 2015, Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos explained the company's rationale behind not airing the special in November 2014: "It just felt like the wrong time to have a comedy special from Bill Cosby, it was just an inappropriate time to have a standup comedy from Bill at that time, in the middle of the holidays." Sarandos described the events which led to the decision to postpone the special as "tragic". In July 2015, Sarandos stated; when questioned at the Television Critics Association summer press tour, Sarandos responded: "I don't think it's appropriate to release that." Bill Cosby: Himself List of original programs distributed by Netflix Colker, Lindsay. "Netflix announces upcoming stand-up comedy slate – Jim Jefferies: BARE Premieres 8/29 Chelsea Handler's Uganda Be Kidding Me Live Premieres 10/10 Chelsea Peretti: One of the Greats Premieres 11/14 Bill Cosby 77 Premieres 11/28 Bill Burr:'I'm Sorry You Feel That Way' Premieres 12/5".
Netflix Media Center. Netflix. Netflix PR. Archived from the original on November 28, 2014. Retrieved November 28, 2014. In Bill Cosby's latest special, Bill Cosby 77, he brings his singular point of view and comedy to his favorite topics, relationships and children. Taped at the SF Jazz
Bill Cosby Presents Badfoot Brown & the Bunions Bradford Funeral Marching Band
Bill Cosby Presents Badfoot Brown & the Bunions Bradford Funeral Marching Band is an album written & produced by Bill Cosby. It is Cosby's fourth musical release, although he does not perform on the album, save for a vocal part on "Abuse"; the music is in a jazz-funk style. Cosby released a titled album in 1971, Badfoot Brown & the Bunions Bradford Funeral & Marching Band where he played electric piano. All tracks written by Bill Cosby. Tracks 2 and 5 feature vocals by Stu Gardner
Motown Records is an American record label owned by Universal Music Group. It was founded by Berry Gordy Jr. as Tamla Records on January 12, 1959, was incorporated as Motown Record Corporation on April 14, 1960. Its name, a portmanteau of motor and town, has become a nickname for Detroit, where the label was headquartered. Motown played an important role in the racial integration of popular music as an African American–owned label that achieved significant crossover success. In the 1960s, Motown and its subsidiary labels were the most successful proponents of what came to be known as the Motown Sound, a style of soul music with a distinct pop influence. Motown was the most successful record label of soul music, with a net worth totaling $61 million. During the 1960s, Motown achieved spectacular success for a small label: 79 records in the top-ten of the Billboard Hot 100 between 1960 and 1969. Following the events of the Detroit Riots of 1967 and the loss of key songwriting/production team Holland-Dozier-Holland the same year over pay disputes, Gordy began relocating Motown to Los Angeles, California.
The move was completed in 1972, Motown expanded into film and television production, remaining an independent company until 1994, when it was sold to PolyGram before being sold again to MCA Records' successor Universal Music Group when it acquired PolyGram in 1999. Motown spent much of the 2000s headquartered in New York City as a part of the UMG subsidiaries Universal Motown and Universal Motown Republic Group. From 2011 to 2014, it was a part of The Island Def Jam Music Group division of Universal Music. In 2014, however, UMG announced the dissolution of Island Def Jam, Motown relocated back to Los Angeles to operate under the Capitol Music Group, now operating out of the landmark Capitol Tower. In 2018, Motown was inducted into Rhythm & Blues Hall of Fame class at the Charles H. Wright Museum, Motown legend Martha Reeves received the award for the label. Berry Gordy got his start as a songwriter for local Detroit acts such as Jackie Wilson and the Matadors. Wilson's single "Lonely Teardrops", written by Gordy, became a huge success, but Gordy did not feel he made as much money as he deserved from this and other singles he wrote for Wilson.
He realized that the more lucrative end of the business was in producing records and owning the publishing. In 1959, Billy Davis and Berry Gordy's sisters Gwen and Anna started Anna Records. Davis and Gwen Gordy wanted Berry to be the company president, but Berry wanted to strike out on his own. On January 12, 1959, he started Tamla Records, with an $800 loan from his family and royalties earned writing for Jackie Wilson. Gordy wanted to name the label Tammy Records, after the hit song popularized by Debbie Reynolds from the 1957 film Tammy and the Bachelor, in which Reynolds starred; when he found the name was in use, Berry decided on Tamla instead. Tamla's first release, in the Detroit area, was Marv Johnson's "Come to Me" in 1959, its first hit was Barrett Strong's "Money". Gordy's first signed act was the Matadors, who changed their name to the Miracles in order to avoid confusion with the Matadors who recorded for Sue, their first release, "Got a Job", was an answer record to the Silhouettes' "Get a Job".
The Miracles' first, minor hit was their fourth single, 1959's "Bad Girl", released in Detroit as the debut record on the Motown imprint, nationally on the Chess label. Miracles lead. Several of Gordy's family members, including his father Berry Sr. brothers Robert and George, sister Esther, were given key roles in the company. By the middle of the decade and Anna Gordy had joined the label in administrative positions as well. Gordy's partner at the time, Raynoma Liles played a key role in the early days of Motown, leading the company's first session group, The Rayber Voices, overseeing the label's publishing arm, Jobete. In 1959, Gordy purchased the property that would become Motown's Hitsville U. S. A. studio. The photography studio located in the back of the property was modified into a small recording studio, the Gordys moved into the second-floor living quarters. Within seven years, Motown would occupy seven additional neighboring houses: Hitsville U. S. A. 1959 – administrative office, tape library, control room, Studio A.
Early Tamla/Motown artists included Eddie Holland and Mary Wells. "Shop Around", the Miracles
It's True! It's True!
It's True! It's True! is the ninth comedy album by Bill Cosby. It was his last for Warner Bros. Records, it was recorded live at Lake Tahoe, Nevada. Due to a musician's strike, Cosby got extra stage time at Harrah's, much of, captured on this album, it features Cosby performing stand-up comedy on topics including women, ants, gambling, the toxic drug Spanish fly, his travels to countries outside the United States. The album was released in 1969, reached the 21st spot on the R&B Albums chart, was 37th on The Billboard 200 the same year, it was subsequently released in compact disc format in 2005, again in 2008, in digital format in 2013. AllMusic gave the album three stars out of a possible five; the Colorado Springs Gazette placed it among Cosby's "Major Records". The album's 2005 re-release was favorably received by the Philadelphia Daily News which characterized it as part of the comedian's "glory days"; the Deseret News called the album "very funny" and a "cause for celebration". The album received renewed attention in 2014 after numerous reports were publicized of multiple women who accused Cosby of sexual assault and rape.
Many of their accounts asserted. The Village Voice reported on the similarities between the stories by the women accusers and Cosby's "Spanish Fly" routine on the album where he recounted his desire to slip the drug into women's drinks; the album was not the last time Cosby had extolled the uses of the drug Spanish fly on women — he subsequently wrote about it in his 1991 book Childhood published by Putnam, again recounted the story in a 1994 interview with the Greensboro News & Record. Comparisons between the "Spanish Fly" story by Cosby and the asserted incidents of sexual assault were reported on by multiple publications including The Boston Globe, the International Business Times, the Chicago Sun-Times, The Washington Post, Philadelphia Daily News, CNN. In an investigative journalism article about the sexual assault assertions by multiple women against Cosby, The Washington Post characterized the "Spanish Fly" routine as "particularly insensitive". It's True! It's True! was Cosby's last album for Warner Bros. Records for twenty years.
His albums including the subsequent production 8:15 12:15 were released under Tetragrammaton Records, managed by Cosby and associates Bruce Post Campbell, Roy Silver under Cosby's parent company CSC Corps. It was recorded live at Lake Tahoe, Nevada. Due to a musician's strike, Cosby got extra stage time at Harrah's, much of, captured on this album. Bill Cosby was its sole performer. Lowell Frank served as engineer on the album, Rudy Hill performed editing, it was produced by Jimmy Hilliard, digitally mastered by Dave Schultz. Ed Thrasher contributed the cover photograph for the album and was in charge of art direction on the work; the mastering on the album was carried out with a process referred to as HAECO-CSG monaural processing, which used for a few years during the transition from mono to stereo to create artificial stereo from mono recordings. According to AllMusic, this led to a decrease of lower frequencies and an audio image, not well established; the recording was released in 1969 in live album format.
It reached the 21st spot on the R&B Albums chart, was 37th on The Billboard 200 the same year. It was subsequently released in compact disc format in 2005 by label Rhino, again in 2008 by Rhino Flashback. A digital version was jointly released in 2013 by Warner Bros.. AllMusic gave the album three stars out of a possible five. In a 1990 article reflecting on Cosby's career, The Colorado Springs Gazette placed the album among the artist's "Major Records". A journalist for The Repository recounted in 2003 that the album was among his early recollections of Cosby recordings among others including I Started Out as a Child and Why Is There Air?. Upon the album's 2005 release as a compact disc, Philadelphia Daily News gave it a favorable review inviting readers to "Return with us now to the glory days of Bill Cosby as a standup comedian"; the newspaper called the album "still funny". The same year The Deseret News called the album "very funny", noted it recounted Cosby's days filming I Spy; the article called the re-release of Cosby's work including the album a "cause for celebration".
In a track on the album titled "Spanish Fly", Cosby discussed his desire to obtain the drug Spanish fly and use it on women by placing it into their drinks. Cosby said he first learned about the substance at age 13, he stated on the album: "'You know anything about Spanish Fly?"No, tell me about it."Well there's this girl Crazy Mary, you put some in her drink man, she,'Haaaaaaaaaaaaah'.' From on, any time you see a girl.'Wish I had some Spanish fly.' Go to a party, see five girls standing alone.'Boy, if I had a whole jug of Spanish fly I'd light that corner up over there.' Haaa-ha-ha.""Cosby further elaborated on his attempts to find Spanish fly, in his book Childhood. The book was published in 1991 by Putnam. In its review of the book The Columbus Dispatch noted Cosby's story about Spanish fly "ventures a bit beyond" childhood. Dayton Daily News wrote that Spanish fly is described in Cosby's book as a type of "wonder drug". In 1994, Greensboro News & Record reported Cosby told a story that in his youth he tried to purchase Spanish fly from a member of the military but it turned out to be cornstarch.
In a 1991 interview with Larry King, Cosby again joked about usage of the drug on women. The 1969 story by Cosby recounting his quest to find Spanish fly received renewed attention in 2014 after multiple women came forward publicly to accuse him of past incidents of sexual assault and rape against them. Acco
Murder of Ennis Cosby
Ennis William Cosby was the only son of Bill Cosby. On January 16, 1997, Cosby was murdered near Interstate 405 in California, he was shot in the head by 18-year-old Mikhail Markhasev in a failed robbery attempt. Cosby's death resulted in significant media coverage, public outrage and an outpouring of support for the Cosby family. Seeking the $100,000 reward offered by the National Enquirer, an acquaintance of the shooter provided information that led to Markhasev's arrest in March 1997. Subsequently, Markhasev was tried and convicted of first-degree murder and attempted robbery on July 7, 1998, was sentenced to life in prison the following month. Markhasev maintained his innocence until 2001, when he admitted to committing the murder and asked that appeals in his case stop. Ennis William Cosby was born April 1969 to Camille Olivia and William Henry Cosby, Jr.. He was their third child and only son. Cosby had four sisters; when Camille was due to give birth to Ennis, Cosby joked during a television special that, "It had better be a boy, you hear, Camille?" and Camille, off-screen, responded, "Right!"
Ennis was born at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Los Angeles and grew up in Southern California and New York City. He attended George School, a private boarding school outside Philadelphia, where he played football, basketball and track and field, he suffered from undiagnosed dyslexia, which caused low grades and friction with his parents, one of whom had an honorary Ed. D degree. Theo Huxtable, Bill Cosby's TV son on The Cosby Show, was based on Ennis, this was reflected in storylines with Theo struggling in school until he was diagnosed with dyslexia, it was written into the script that Cosby's character, Cliff Huxtable, had been wrong in blaming Theo for his poor grades. Ennis Cosby's dyslexia was diagnosed when he entered Morehouse College in Atlanta, where a friend encouraged him to be tested. After the diagnosis, he spent a summer semester undergoing intensive academic training at Landmark College, a private university in Putney, established for students with learning disabilities, he returned to Morehouse, where he made the dean's list when his grade point average jumped from 2.3 to more than 3.5.
In his free time, he tutored students at high schools. He earned a bachelor's degree in 1992 from Morehouse, which he followed with a master's degree from Columbia University in New York in 1995. While at Columbia, he worked at Alfred E. Smith Elementary School and tutored students struggling with learning disabilities, his friends recalled that he kept a low profile and did not want special treatment, would just say that his father worked "in business" when asked why he had lived in three states. At the time of his death at 27, Cosby was working toward his doctorate in special education at Columbia University's Teachers College, he planned to set up a school for children with learning disabilities. He once wrote, "The happiest day of my life occurred. I believe that life is finding solutions, the worst feeling to me is confusion." Ennis was recalled as friendly and outgoing, he would greet people with, "Hello, friend," a greeting that became his legacy. His parents had the phrase put on a sign near his grave, several months after his death, his father released a jazz collection titled, Friend: To Ennis With Love.
Cosby was in Los Angeles in January 1997, while on winter break from his classes at Columbia University. In the early hours of January 16, 1997, he was visiting friends in Los Angeles and driving north on Interstate 405 through the Sepulveda Pass when, at 1 a.m. he pulled off the freeway onto Skirball Center Drive to fix a flat tire. He called Stephanie Crane, who drove to meet him, she testified that a man came to her window and told her, "Open the door or I'll kill you." Frightened, Crane drove away but after 50 feet turned her car around and came back. She saw a man running away and found Cosby lying on the ground in a pool of blood next to the driver's side of his dark green Mercedes-Benz, he had been shot in the head. It appeared robbery was a motive, but Cosby was still wearing a Rolex watch and had three $20 bills in his pocket; the Los Angeles Police Department contacted Congresswoman Maxine Waters, a close friend of Bill Cosby for many years, to ask for his phone number. Waters declined to give it to them, instead asking another close friend, Essence magazine publisher Ed Lewis, to be the one to tell Cosby.
However, the police contacted the CBS studio which produced his new series, filmed in New York at Kaufman Astoria Studios in Queens. Cosby was on set at the time when producer Joanne Curley-Kerner informed him of the death of his son. Los Angeles police spoke with him and discouraged him from flying to Los Angeles; the Cosby family received an outpouring of support from the general public. Truckloads of flowers were delivered to the family's home in New York City, strangers left flowers on the spot where the murder took place. U. S. President Bill Clinton, Vice President Al Gore and South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu called Bill Cosby to offer condolences. Within 36 hours of his death, the high number of calls asking how Cosby's memory could be honored prompted his family to form the Ennis William Cosby Foundation. At the time of its inception, the foundation's purpos