Aretha Franklin, Queen of Soul, dead at 76

August 16, 2018 12:24 pm

Aretha Franklin, the Memphis-born singer known as the Queen of Soul, died Thursday of advanced pancreatic cancer at age 76.


Franklin died Thursday morning at her home in Detroit, according to her representative, Gwendolyn Quinn.


“In one of the darkest moments of our lives, we are not able to find the appropriate words to express the pain in our heart,” Franklin’s family said in the statement. “We have lost the matriarch and rock of our family. The love she had for her children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews and cousins knew no bounds.


“We have been deeply touched by the incredible outpouring of love and support we have received from close friends, supporters and fans all around the world. Thank you for your compassion and prayers. We have felt your love for Aretha and it brings us comfort to know that her legacy will live on.” 


Franklin’s hits, such as RespectI Say A Little Prayer and Chain Of Fools, are still associated with her powerful gospel voice, more than 40 years after their release.


“Her voice is literally a national treasure,” media mogul Oprah Winfrey said in a 2003 broadcast.


“She is the undisputed Queen of Soul for all times.”


Franklin, who turned 76 in March, has been battling health problems, but continued to perform until as recently as last year. She has been secretive about her health issues, which have included periods out of the spotlight and at least one surgery.


​More recently, Franklin continued to book public appearances, but health concerns occasionally forced her to cancel or postpone.


In the past few years, she regularly cited doctor’s orders for cancelling notable concerts, including a Canada Day show in Toronto on the 150th anniversary of Confederation, and several New Jersey gigs, such as the one to mark her 76th birthday in March.

In early 2017, Franklin announced she was ready to retire from live performing, but didn’t close the door to taking an occasional gig or two. She also said she wanted to continue recording music. 
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Source: CBC News