"Frankie was a resilient woman, mom, and friend with so much to offer and will be missed by many," a BET spokesperson told EW.

By Jolie Lash
July 19, 2021 at 04:36 PM EDT
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Frankie Lons, Keyshia Cole's mother, has died. She was 61 years old.

Cole's brother, Sam, confirmed the news to the website. He told TMZ that Lons relapsed and overdosed on Sunday (her birthday) at her home in Oakland, Calif.

The singer's younger sister, Elite Nicole, posted about the tragic news on her Instagram story in the early hours of Monday morning.

Frankie Lons
Frankie Lons
| Credit: Paras Griffin/Getty Images

"We were saddened to hear the news of our BET family Frankie Lons' passing," a BET spokesperson told EW in a statement.

"Viewers also got to see firsthand Frankie's trials and tribulations as she battled addiction and as she tried to mend her relationship with her daughters," the network said. "Frankie was a resilient woman, mom, and friend with so much to offer and will be missed by many. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Keyshia, Neffe, and the family during this difficult time." 

Last year, Cole revealed that Lons, who had struggled with drug abuse issues, had checked into a treatment facility

Lons appeared in Keyshia Cole: The Way It Is back in 2006 on BET and also was part of the spin-off series Frankie & Neffe (featuring Cole's older sister). 

In Keyshia Cole: My New Life, a TV special that aired in 2019, the R&B singer shared her concern and worries with her mother.

"Okay, so I wanted to bring you outside to talk to you for a second about when you hurt somebody's feelings, when I'm sitting there and I'm telling you that I'm going to come looking for you, and you're not going to be there?" Cole said. "That's a real situation because some things happen … out there in the streets, and it scares a child."

During the heartbreaking conversation, Lons told Cole that if something happened to her, to keep going.

"If I die today, you've got to move on and you've got to make it," Lons said. "You've got to live for Keyshia. You have to live for you and your family... You have to move on if anything [happens] to me."

"At the end of the day, you'll see me later, up there," Lons said, pointing to the sky.

Representatives Cole didn't immediately respond to EW's request for comment.

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