James’ health has been on the decline for a number of years, with a doctor moving into the signer’s home in March 2010 to better care for her.
Until now the extent of James’ illness has been kept private. But as her situation worsens fans are being asked to pray for her.
According to probate court records in addition to leukemia, James, born Jamesetta Hawkins in 1938, also suffers from dementia and kidney failure.
James’ son Donto James is currently in court trying to wrestle control of the singer’s estate from her husband, Artis Mills, and have a court-appointed conservator oversee the singer’s $1 million estate.