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Yvonne Ervin, Founder of the Tucson Jazz Festival, Dies at 59

Succeeding in a wide array of roles over her career, she was a tireless advocate for jazz

Yvonne Ervin and Enzo Capua
Yvonne Ervin with Enzo Capua of the Umbria Jazz Festival at the 2011 JJA awards ceremony at City Winery in NYC

Yvonne Ervin, a jazz journalist, photographer, musician, fundraiser, promoter, broadcaster, and educator who was the founder and executive director of the Tucson Jazz Festival, died Dec. 26 at the Mayo Clinic in Phoenix, Ariz. She was 59.

Her death was confirmed to the Arizona Daily Star by her husband, Alan Hershowitz, who said that the cause of death was a heart attack following liver transplant surgery. Ervin had been battling hepatitis A since October.

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