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AT&T Presents: Listen 2 Learn! Della Reese

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Touched by an Angel star Della Reese - who began her showbiz career as a jazz singer - recalls how she came to tour with the greatest gospel diva of all time, Mahalia Jackson. "Mahalia came to the church and she had a group of singers with her and one of them was pregnant. And nobody knew that she was pregnant," she tells REEL Ladies on the Spot host Nikki Love. "We had no air-conditioning in the church, so the funeral host gave us fans to cool ourselves with.  And the lady fainted. A doctor in the service discovered she was pregnant. Mahalia was on her way to the South and the singer's husband said he would not allow his wife to go because at that time it was difficult for a black person to get service in a hospital. And he didn't want to risk the life of his wife and his child. And so the pastor asked my mother if I could go with Mahalia to replace this singer."