Bill Cosby’s daughter, Ensa (pictured above left), has died. According to TMZ, the 44 year old passed away on Friday, February 23.
A rep for the Cosby family told People Magazine that she died from renal disease. TMZ reports she may have been waiting for a kidney transplant.
Ensa Cosby was one of five children born to Bill and Camille Cosby. Her siblings included sisters Erika, Erinn, and Evin and a brother, Ennis. Ensa was predeceased by her brother, who was murdered in 1997.
Ensa Cosby is survived by one child, her parents, and her three sisters.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. She Was Suffering From Serious Kidney Issues
Details surrounding Ensa Cosby’s death have been coming out little by little. According to TMZ, she died in Massachusetts, but it’s unknown if she was at home or in the hospital.
A rep for the Cosby family told People Magazine that Ensa died from renal disease, a chronic kidney disease that can be caused by diabetes, high blood pressure, or a variety of other conditions. The primary function of the kidneys is to filter waste and excess fluid from the blood. That waste is excreted through the urine.
TMZ reported that Ensa had been suffering with kidney issues over the past several years. A source told the outlet that Ensa Cosby’s kidney issues were so bad that she may have been in need of a transplant. Based on this information, Ensa may have been in the end-stage of kidney disease, meaning that she was likely undergoing dialysis and she may have needed a kidney transplant.
When a person goes into renal failure, “toxins are suddenly released in the blood circulation,” according to the Mayo Clinic.
2. A Rep for the Cosbys Released a Statement on Their Behalf Following Ensa’s Passing
The Cosbys have released a statement through a representative, following Ensa’s death.
“The Cosby Family thanks many people for their prayers for their beloved and beautiful Ensa, who recently died from renal disease,” Cosby’s spokesperson Andrew Wyatt told People Magazine.
No members of the Cosby family have spoken to the media about Ensa’s passing.
3. She Has Been Very Supportive of Her Dad Over the Years
In the past, Ensa had been very supportive of her dad, who has been embroiled in sexual assault allegations for years.
Last year, Cosby’s sexual misconduct case ended in a mistrial. At the time, Ensa and her sister, Erinn, defended their dad, releasing statements to a radio show called The Breakfast Club.
You can read Ensa’s full statement about the accusations made about her father below.
“I’m a very private person and I’ve chosen to live my life with my family quietly but for my child, my niece and my nephew, and my father, I can’t sit quietly anymore. The man portrayed in the media today is not who my father is. My father is a civil rights activist, my father is an advocate for children. My father is an educator, my father is a philanthropist, my father is an immensely talented and innovated entertainer. His philosophy is that people are good and through effort and self-confidence, each person can make the world better. This is the man who is my father: a visionary whose life and career have focused on love and learning, on creativity and humor. These are the same core values that he has tried to model for me and my siblings, his grandchildren, and for the millions of strangers who encounter his work and advocacy. The accusations against my father have been one sided since the beginning, and when he tried to defend himself he was sued in civil court. I’ve seen the accusations become more horrific and extreme with time and I have witnessed my father’s reputation and legendary work be dismissed without any proof. I strongly believe my father is innocent of the crimes alleged against him and I believe that racism has played a big role in all aspects of this scandal. How the charges came about being made against him, how people were willing to believe them before they were ever scrutinized or tested. How people who tried to speak to support him or people who questioned the claims were shut down and ignored and not given a voice. How the media created the story and the outcome before any court will ever test the claims. How my father is being punished by a society that still believes black men rape white women but passes off ‘boys will be boys’ when white men are accused and how the politics of our country prove my disgust. My father has been publicly lynched in the media and my family, my young daughter, my young niece and nephew have had to stand helplessly by and watch the double standard or pretending to protect the rights of some but ignoring the rights of others and exposing innocent children to such appalling accusations about someone that they love dearly and who has been so loving and kind to them is beyond cruel.”
Bill Cosby is due back in court next month for a retrial.
4. She Had 4 Siblings Growing Up & Her Only Brother Was Killed in 1997
Bill Cosby and his wife, Camille, have five children together. In 1997, their only son, Ennis, was murdered. According to People Magazine, Ennis Cosby was shot to death in Los Angeles when he was trying to change a flat tire and someone tried to rob him.
A man by the name of Michael Markhasev was convicted in the case and was sentenced to life in prison without parole.
The Cosbys have three other daughters, Erika, 52, Erinn, 51, and Evin, 41. Their daughter, Erinn, has struggled with drug abuse over the years and has an estranged relationship with her family.
“She can’t come here. She’s not a person you can trust. This particular daughter appears to be the only one who is really very selfish. She’s never held down a job, never kept an apartment for more than six months. She never finishes anything. She uses her boyfriends. She wants the finer things but can’t stand anybody’s else’s dirt, which is important,” Cosby told the Los Angeles Times back in 1989.
5. She Was on an Episode of ‘The Cosby Show’
Ensa Cosby has collaborated with her dad in the past, appearing in an episode of The Cosby Show when it was in its sixth season. You can see part of the episode in the video above. Ensa is the one wearing orange pants.
According to her IMDb page, this is the only television show or film that Ensa ever acted in.