By Nigel Boys
Canadian-born singer Denis Katrina Matthews, better known as Vanity died after battling an abdominal illness and suffering from kidney failure for a long time at the age of 57-years-old, according to reports.
TMZ reports that the former protégé of Prince and lead singer of Vanity 6 from 1982 till 1983 died in a hospital in Fremont, California on Monday. A GoFundMe Page, setup by the former singer and actress last year, stated that she had been diagnosed with sclerosis encapsulating peritonitis, which is an inflammation of the small intestines.
Before moving into the field of music, Vanity had tried her hand at modeling, but scored her first major impact on the music industry with Vanity 6 in their hit, “Nasty Girl.” Her solo career began with the hits “Pretty Mess” and “Under the Influence” and she later recorded two solo albums.
As far as her acting was concerned, Vanity achieved a fairly successful career, appearing in the films “The Last Dragon,” “52 Pick-Up” and “Action Jackson,” according to The Wrap.
After struggling with drug abuse, Vanity eventually ditched Hollywood in the mid 90s, quit drugs and became a born-again Christian, but not before it had taken a tremendous toll on her health. Despite suffering renal failure, which required peritoneal dialysis five times a day, according to a Jet Magazine feature about her, Vanity remained active in her local church up until her death.
Before her death on Monday, Vanity had reportedly been in church on Saturday evening, where she told the congregation she was “ready to go home.”
“When I came to the Lord Jesus Christ, I threw out about 1,000 tapes of mine — every interview, every tape, every video. Everything,” Vanity said after renouncing her stage name and reverting back to Matthews. Following her kidney transplant in 1997, she reportedly devoted herself to Christ and spoke frequently at different churches.
The former wife of Los Angeles Raiders player, Anthony Smith, who divorced him one year after their marriage in 1995, also released an autobiography in 2010, named “Blame It on Vanity.” She was also reportedly romantically involved with Nikki Sixx, bassist for Motley Crue, after her divorce from Smith.
“Today my friend & Sister Denise Katrina Matthews p/k/a #Vanity passed away,” MC Hammer wrote on Twitter Monday, paying tribute to the beloved singer. “She absolutely loved GOD unto salvation. Rest in his Glory,” the rapper added.
Also in tribute to Matthews, musician, Sheila E tweeted, “U ARE IN HIS ARMS NOW, NO Pain.”