Miss Cleo, the iconic TV Psychic, dies at 53

Stalwart of late-night commercials of the late '90s and pop culture touchstone "Miss Cleo" died Tuesday after a battle with colon cancer, her lawyer confirmed to the Associated Press. Her representative told TMZ that she was hospitalized recently and was living in a hospice center at the time of her death in Palm Beach County, Florida.

Youree Dell Harris, known in advertising as the Jamaican mystic "Miss Cleo", in 2002.

In a 2014 interview with Vice, Cleo revealed how she got into the fortune telling business, claiming she came from a family of "spooky people" but did not actually consider herself a psychic. Using the name "Miss Cleo", Harris claimed to be a psychic and Tarot card reader from Jamaica.

That same year, Harris, who had been heavily lampooned on late-night TV, found another sort of role: a job voicing a Miss Cleo-like character on the popular video game series, "Grand Theft Auto".

She mentioned that fame to the Advocate as well, the LGBT magazine in which she came out as a lesbian in 2006. Her ads were famous enough as it was, but the catchphrase "CALL ME NOW!" was definitely the most memorable part. Miss Cleo made quite the career out of her small-screen-based fame - but now, the world is saying goodbye to Miss Cleo, as she has sadly passed away at the age of 53. "I don't know who I helped, but I'm certain I helped some people", Harris said in the trailer for the documentary. "So they refer to me as psychic - because the word voodoo scares just about everybody". Born and raised in Los Angeles, she attended a Catholic school, and, during an interview with The Advocate, she cites how her godson was instrumental in her decision to come out publicly. She also acted in the play, starring as a Jamaican woman named Cleo.

While her parents and some family members knew she was gay, she never told other relatives, out of "fear of the wrath, of the exile".

"I'm sorry she died, I really am", Crawford said, adding that Harris had a "good heart" and that Harris had a young daughter that she took "very good care" of. She was a big fan of the other guy and tried passionately to convince me that he was really good.

Harris was famous, or infamous, for her late TV show that hosted a hotline at the end of the 1990s. When are you coming back? But there are places where I go and people are like, 'Yo!

  • Marlene Weaver