Tragic news: Shannon Tavarez, the 11-year-old star of The Lion King on Broadway, has died after losing her battle with leukemia. After learning the news, Rihanna -- who became friends with Shannon during her ordeal -- took a moment to tweet her condolences:
Just got off of a plane ride and got horrible news that our little star Shannon Taverez has lost her battle against leukemia!
Way too soon...keep her family in your prayers
The lights dimmed for Shannon on Broadway last night; the sixth-grader, who was forced to quit her role as young Nala in The Lion King in April, was also supported in her struggle with leukemia by 50 Cent and Alicia Keys, who campaigned to help Shannon find a donor.
'Lion King' actress dies from leukemia [Yahoo! News]