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Aretha Franklin’s funeral to fuse spirit with star-power

Aretha Franklin’s funeral to fuse spirit with star-power

DETROIT (AP) – An epic funeral aims to salute the legacy of Aretha Franklin and close out a week of high-profile tributes and visitations.

The Queen of Soul’s invitation-only funeral Friday at Detroit’s Greater Grace Temple include former President Bill Clinton, the Rev. Jesse Jackson and Smokey Robinson. Singers include Steve Wonder, Ariana Grande, Jennifer Hudson, Faith Hill and Chaka Khan.

The service, which may exceed five hours, follows three days of public visitations and a concert in her honor in the city where spent most of her life.

Aretha Franklin’s coffin lies at Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History during a public visitation in Detroit, Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2018. Franklin died Aug. 16, of pancreatic cancer at the age of 76. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya, Pool)

Franklin’s niece, Sabrina Owens, says organizers of the services have been guided by a single question: “What would Aretha want?” Owens and a group she calls “Aretha’s angels” sought to create “an appropriate send-off that would match her legacy.”

Franklin died Aug. 16 at 76 of pancreatic cancer.

People gather outside New Bethel Baptist Church before a viewing for Aretha Franklin, Thursday, Aug. 30, 2018, in Detroit. Franklin died Aug. 16, 2018 of pancreatic cancer at the age of 76. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

People gather outside New Bethel Baptist Church before a viewing for Aretha Franklin, Thursday, Aug. 30, 2018, in Detroit. Franklin died Aug. 16, 2018 of pancreatic cancer at the age of 76. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

Vincent Street wipes down the casket of legendary singer Aretha Franklin at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit, Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2018. Franklin died Aug. 16, 2018 of pancreatic cancer at the age of 76. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

Vincent Street wipes down the casket of legendary singer Aretha Franklin at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit, Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2018. Franklin died Aug. 16, 2018 of pancreatic cancer at the age of 76. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

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