DETROIT - Funeral plans are starting to come together for Aretha Franklin, "The Queen of Soul," who died Thursday after a battle with pancreatic cancer.
She was 76. At the time of her death she was at home in Detroit surrounded by friends and family.
The all-star lineup for Franklin's funeral includes Stevie Wonder, Faith Hill, Jennifer Hudson, Fantasia, Shirley Caesar and many more.
- It will be a four-day event to celebrate her life.
- For two days, Franklin's body will lie in repose at Charles H. Wright Museum for African American History. The viewing will be open to the public.
- The funeral will be held at Greater Grace Temple and will only be for close family and friends.
- Right now, Franklin's body is being held at Swanson Funeral Home in Detroit.
- An exact date for the funeral is still being determined.
Fans gather at New Bethel Baptist Church to pay tribute to Aretha
By Jermont Terry
Ever since the news broke of Franklin's death Thursday morning, fans have been gathering at New Bethel Baptist Church in Detroit to pay their respects.
It rained on and off throughout the day, but damp conditions didn't stop residents from coming out to the church and showing their love for the Queen of Soul. The New Bethel Baptist Church, located on the corner of Linwood and Philadelphia streets, was where Franklin first sang.
The mood at the church wasn't sadness, but pride for the music icon.
Resident Pam Harris came to the New Bethel Baptist Church to introduce her granddaughter Mariah to Franklin. As press from across the world converged in Detroit to honor the Queen of Soul, 8-year-old Mariah had a simple question for her grandmother when she heard the news -- who was Franklin?
"We were watching TV and she's looking at all the pictures of Aretha and I'm telling her, 'This is the Queen of Soul, she sings this song,'" Harris said.
That's when Harris knew she had to come down to Aretha's father's church to honor Franklin and give her granddaughter a history lesson.
"That's why I said I'm going to bring my granddaughter and let her see where it all started for the Queen of Soul," Harris said.
They aren't the only ones showing respect. Flowers, balloon and words of gratitude were left outside the church as residents honor the Detroit icon.
"If you're from the city of Detroit or the neighborhood or the inner communities, how could you not?" asked John Amerson.
Franklin's voice and gifts stretched beyond the Motor City -- her music reached people of all ages across the world.
"The songs she created -- she spoke on every single topic to teach you how to love the ladies, how to respect mothers, aunties and sisters," Amerson said. "Internationally, wherever she went in the world, she represented us."
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