It seems there’s been some great exaggeration. Rumors of Etta James‘ death swirled online on Thursday, but the reports are decidedly false, her son Donto James tells the Los Angeles Times.
“She’s fine. I just saw her last night and she was fine,” he says.
A fake TMZ page reported that the singer died on August 3. Though James is seriously ill and suffering from leukemia and dementia, she is alive. While she’s been in and out of hospitals over the past year, her family has been in court, battling for her $1 million in savings. Currently, her sons have control over her finances and medical care, though her husband of 41 years is seeking power of attorney.
TMZ may seek legal action over the incident, in which a hoax site copied their layout and reported the false news. “We are aware someone has faked a TMZ site and our legal department is all over it,” says Casey Carver, spokesperson for TMZ.