In May, reports surfaced that Yvette Wilson, the beloved Andell Wilkerson, who owned The Den, on Moesha and The Parkers, was battling stage 4 cervical cancer as well as kidney failure and needed donations to help with her medical bills. Sadly, Wilson lost her battle on June 14.
Those on Twitter learned of Wilson’s passing through her Moesha co-star Shar Jackson who played Niecy, a best friend to Moesha played by singer/actress Brandy. Jackson tweeted “I wanna thank all my tweeties for their prayers but god has chosen to take my sister Yvette home.”
The Los Angeles native’s big television break came on the short-lived Thea, which aired in 1993 and 1994, starring fellow comedienne Thea Vidale. Wilson played the sister-in-law on the show about a widowed single mother of four. Future Moesha star Brandy played Thea’s daughter. But Wilson, one of the few female comedians on Def Comedy Jam, also appeared in several black films, including Friday, House Party 3, Poetic Justice and Don’t Be a Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice in the Hood.
On Moesha, the beloved late comedian Bernie Mac played Moesha’s uncle Bernie Mitchell, who was also the boyfriend of Wilson’s Andell. Wilson was a comforting presence on the show. Owner of The Den, where Moesha and her friends hung out, Wilson’s Andell was the older friend that would support and listen to the youth, often helping them through their issues.
It was not uncommon for Wilson’s character Andell to don African clothing on the show, which was a powerful image to project on television, as was her average frame.
When Countess Vaughn, who had played Moesha’s other best friend Kim, scored a spin-off, The Parkers, as co-star to then newcomer Mo’Nique,Wilson’s character Andell traveled over. As the best friend of Mo’Nique’s character Nikki, Wilson’s Andell was seen regularly.
According to a Facebook post from the Center for Black Women's Wellness in Atlanta, Black women are "70% more likely to have an abnormal pap test -- the screening for cervical cancer -- than their white counterparts." More serious, "Black women are also 40% more likely to develop cervical cancer and 2x [sic] more likely to die from the disease than Caucasian women." Therefore, it is essential to get regular pap tests.
Born on March 6, 1964, Yvette Wilson was 48.
Catch re-runs of Moesha on Atlanta-based GMC TV and The Parkers on BET.