Ruby Dee (1922-2014) was an Academy Award-nominated actress and political activist, and for 56 years, the wife of Ossie Davis. Dee appeared on Sesame Street during the first season, in inserts which debuted in Episode 0114 (in which she read a story book) and Episode 0129 (in which she counted to 20).
An Emmy Award winner (for the 1990 TV movie Decoration Day), Dee began her career on stage, on and off-Broadway, appearing with Will Lee in The World of Sholom Alecheim (1952). In 1959, she originated the role of supportive housewife Ruth Younger in A Raisin in the Sun, and reprised the role on film in 1960.
Other movie credits included The Jackie Robinson Story (as Robinson's wife Rachel), The Incident, Buck and the Preacher (with Harry Belafonte), A Simple Wish (with Martin Short), and American Gangster (earning an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress and an Image Awards nomination).
Television work in the 1960s included regular roles on the soap operas The Guiding Light (as Martha Frazier) and Peyton Place (as Alma Mills), while later TV work included Lincoln! (1988), The Stand (as Mother Abigail), and Bill Cosby's animated series Little Bill (as Alice the Great). She appeared with her husband Ossie Davis in the celebrity version of "Sing" in Episode 3851.