Oxford resident Mykki Newton – videographer, journalist, ailurophile and lover of all things purple – died from natural causes this weekend.
Newton was discovered unresponsive at her home Saturday by the Oxford Police Department, according to Lafayette County Coroner Rocky Kennedy.
Newton, originally from Huntsville, Alabama recently retired from the University of Mississippi School of Journalism and New Media where she wore many hats as a producer, director, writer, videographer, editor and camera equipment manager. She ran the video department and assisted students with their work.
She studied at both The Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute and The Actor’s Studio in New York City. With more than 30-years of professional experience as a broadcast journalist, actor and filmmaker, she was an Emmy and Telly Award-winning journalist/producer/director. Prior to her journey at Ole Miss, she was a news anchor and reporter at WATN-TV, WENY TV and WAFF-TV.
In the documentary feature, “Voodoo Child: Memoir of a Freak,” in 2013, Newton told her story about her journey from Michael the tormented television anchorman to Mykki, the happy hippie chick transsexual in Mississippi.
While she became well known for her work as a videographer and filmmaker, Newton was best known for her love of life and the courage to finally be herself. She was the “mother” to many stray cats who would wander to her home. She loved classic movies, Marilyn Monroe and the color purple.
She loved sharing a cup of coffee with friends while enjoying a good conversation.
In return, the Oxford community loved Mykki. News of her death was shared quickly on social media, garnering comments of shock, sadness, love and admiration.
No funeral arrangements have been announced; however, a family friend stated on Facebook that Newton’s family will be planning a future celebration of Newton’s life.