Coretta Scott King dies at 78

ATLANTA (AP) - Coretta Scott King has died at the age of 78.

The widow of Martin Luther King had suffered a serious stroke and heart attack last year.

Flags at the King Center in Atlanta have been lowered to half-staff.

In a statement, King's family said, "We appreciate the prayers and condolences from people across the country."

The statement said she died overnight.

Following her husband's assassination in 1968, King devoted her life to ensuring that his own legacy of human rights and equality lived on.

Former Atlanta Mayor Andrew Young, who's close to the family, told NBC that King's daughter Bernice went in to wake her up last night but was unable to do so.

He says, "Her spirit will remain with us just as her husband's has."

Poet Maya Angelou told ABC it's both a "bleak" morning and a "great" one -- great because "we have a chance to look at her and see what she did and who she was."