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Etta James performs during the 2006 New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival in New Orleans in a Saturday, April 29, 2006 file photo - Provided courtesy of AP

Etta James, 73, hospitalized and placed on breathing machine

Get more: Celeb Lives
12/23/2011 by Corinne Heller

Etta James, who has been battling leukemia, has been hospitalized and placed on a breathing machine.

The 73-year-old Grammy-winning R&B and soul singer, known for songs such as "At Last" and "Tell Mama," has been undergoing treatment for her blood cancer for the past few years and also suffers from ailments such as dementia and kidney failure. Her doctor said last week that her chronic leukemia was deemed incurable.

"They took her to the hospital," the Reuters news wire quoted James' manager as saying on Friday, December 23. "She was having trouble breathing, so they intubated her. She is on a breathing machine and is resting."

The Associated Press reported that James was taken to a hospital in Southern California, where she lives, on Wednesday.

Earlier this week, James' sons Sametto and Donto reached a deal over the management of her $1 million estate and medical care, naming her husband and their stepfather, Artis Mills, as the permanent conservator. A judge ruled that $350,000 would be made available for James' treatment.

He and James wed in 1969. Mills served a 10-year prison sentence after accepting responsibility for heroin possession after he and James were caught with the drug. He was released from prison in 1982.

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