“Congratulations” Star Vesta Williams, 53

Vesta Williams

Singer Vesta Williams, known for the hit “Congratulations” was found dead Friday, September 23rd in a California hotel room.  There was no official cause of death released.  The R & B singer, popular in the 80’s had struggled for years with obesity and a waning recording career.
Vesta’s songs exemplified strong women, and she showed that strength in her ability to lose 100 pounds at one time.  Despite the massive weight loss, she felt obesity was the barrier to her career.  Vesta said in an earlier interview.  “When I lost my record deal and my phone wasn’t ringing, I realized that I had to reassess who Vesta was and figure out what was going wrong. I knew it wasn’t my singing ability. So it had to be that I was expendable because I didn’t have the right look.”
Vesta became an advocate for the prevention of childhood obesity and juvenile diabetes.
She was born on December 1, 1957.  She is survived by an adult daughter.
Ms. Williams had been scheduled to perform on Oct. 22 at the 21st annual “DIVAS Simply Singing!” concert in Los Angeles, to help promote AIDS and HIV awareness. The show will pay tribute to her and another soul singer, Teena Marie, who died last December.