Patricia 'Bonnie' Pointer, one of the Grammy-winning founding member of the Pointer Sisters, has died aged 69 of cardiac arrest.
Her sister Anita confimed the news to Variety, saying she had lost her "best friend".
“It is with great sadness that I have to announce to the fans of the Pointer Sisters that my sister Bonnie died this morning,” she said. “Our family is devastated. On behalf of my siblings and I and the entire Pointer family, we ask for your prayers at this time.”
The four Pointer sisters, Ruth, Anita, Bonnie and June, grew up singing in church in Oakland, California, where their father was a minister.
Bonnie rose to fame in the 1970s as a founding member of The Pointer Sisters with Anita and younger sibling June, who died in 2006.
"The Pointer Sisters would never have happened had it not been for Bonnie," Anita Pointer said in her statement.
Bonnie was credited writing the song 'Fairytale' with her sister Anita, which reached #13 on the Pop Charts and #37 on the Country Charts.
From the song's success, the group was invited to Nashville, Tennessee where they achieved the rare distinction of becoming the first Afro-American group perform at the Grand Ole Opry.
In 1975 the Pointer Sisters won their first Grammy Award for Best Country Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal for "Fairytale", and Anita and Bonnie were nominated as songwriters for the Grammy Award for Best Country Song. The song would later be covered by artist such as Elvis Presley.
Both Bonnie and June left The Pointer Sisters by 1977, where Bonnie pursued her own solo career. Her first self-titled album featured the disco song "Heaven Must Have Sent You", which became a Top 20 hit in 1979.