Published: Fri, August 31, 2018
Culture&Arts | By Rick Owen

Aretha Franklin fans pay their last respects at Detroit museum

Aretha Franklin fans pay their last respects at Detroit museum

There, they found Franklin in her bronze casket in a sheer light blue dress and matching shoes, a change from the red outfit she wore on Tuesday.

Ahead of her funeral on Friday, the star's body was put on display in a gold coffin at the Charles H Wright Museum of African American History in her home town of Detroit.

Many others set up shop, selling memorabilia including T-shirts, pins, photos, and booklets with a CD of the 18-time Grammy champ's most prominent hits.

The God Is A Woman hitmaker joins a line-up of esteemed performers for Franklin's funeral including Stevie Wonder, Faith Hill, Chaka Khan and Jennifer Hudson.

The two-day viewing was part of a week of commemorations for the legend, who died on August 16 of pancreatic cancer. Franklin urged us to, 'Let's make the choice: We stand as one because divided we fail.' Her plea is as timeless today as it was more than a decade ago.

Hundreds of members of Delta Sigma Theta paid tribute to their soror, Aretha Franklin at a packed ceremony that capped a day of mourning in Detroit.

Swift first spoke about what Franklin meant to music and the world, saying, "She did so much for music, she did so much for women's rights, she did so much for civil rights". "I'm OK - I'm going to rest now, '" Mills said. The retired counsellor, who grew up in the same neighbourhood as Franklin and crossed paths with her in the pre-fame years, said she always appreciated that the singer remained rooted.

Tammy Gibson, 49, said: "I know people are sad, but it's just celebrating - people dancing and singing her music".

"She was intertwined in all of our lives", she said, adding that her love for the singer "started with 'Respect.'" "We're just feeling good about seeing the Queen".

But at least one song recorded by Franklin never saw release at all, at least during her lifetime.

She was awarded America's highest civilian honor by George W. Bush and tops Rolling Stone's list of the 100 greatest singers of all time.

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