Sister Ree; remembered not just in Detroit, but around the world

By Laydell Wood Harper
Tell Us USA News Network

DETROIT (Tell Us USA) - Aretha Louise Franklin, her name continues to resonate, not just in Detroit but around the world. Every day since the announcement of her death on Thursday, August 16, at 9:50 am, the public has continued to share their love for The Queen of Soul and their memories. Many of those memories are marked by some of the singer’s greatest hit recordings. But we also learned an awful lot about this hometown superstar as people from around the world share their stories.

Her fans have never heard much about her private life except that she had four sons; she loved Detroit and always called Detroit her hometown, and grew up in the Church. This past Sunday one of her sons worshiped at one of Detroit’s most respected churches. He was introduced to the congregation as the son of Aretha Franklin. Immediately the congregation stood and erupted in applauds for this young man still mourning the loss of his beloved mother. Worshipers shook his hand and many gave him a hug for encouragement. He was humble and noticeably grateful.

The Queen of Soul memories, stories and her music continue to turn this very sad occasion into joyous moments of reflection shared with the world.

Smokey Robinson commented, “We’ve known each other since we were kids. She had a great sense of humor. She was a very humorous woman. And, she could really throw down in the kitchen. Most people think about Aretha Franklin Queen of Soul not her regular everyday life.”

Chuck Stokes, TV-7 talked about how he and Aretha Franklin lived in the same neighborhood growing up, along with Diana Ross and the Temptations.

Judge Craig Strong talked extensively about knowing Ms. Franklin and their friendship over the years dating back to before age 14 when her father the Reverend C. L. Franklin took him and several friends to a local restaurant. “Aretha was a wonderful woman, a phenomenal, authentic, one of a kind human being. I grew up with her music.”

“She had a great sense of humor,” comments Judge Strong. “I can recall showing her a copy of Ebony Magazine with her picture on the front cover. She laughed and said, “Who is that fine Chick?” Strong continues, “I especially loved the comments that allowed people to see a different side of Aretha. She was not just an entertainer. She was a civil rights activist who used her own money to help when Martin Luther King or other civil rights leaders needed help. I was so proud to see her sing at President Obama’s Inauguration and the dedication of the MLK Statue.”

Strong comments, “We were honored to have her in Detroit. She was loyal to us and we were loyal to her.”

She was the Queen of Soul and no one can take that title away from her.
Another fan commented,” I could always tell what kind of mood my mom was in by the Aretha Franklin song she was playing.

Al Sharpton interviewed Ms. Franklin shortly after she sang the National Anthem at President Obama’s inauguration. Sharpton asked, “What was it like to be asked to sing at the inauguration of the First Black President of the United States?” “It was absolutely tremendous,” said Ms. Franklin. “It was absolutely tremendous to look out as far as you could see, and see the throngs of people in front of you; to the right and to the left. Standing there after my father marched for civil rights, and knowing that this moment in history evolved out of the civil rights movement. This is the fruition of their struggles, your struggles and my struggles.”

“Aretha Franklin was one who used her platform to lift people up,” Sharpton remarks. “My prayers go out to the family of Aretha Franklin. She gave money, helped get people out of jail, and she never forgot her roots. If your roots are weak you will never be able to survive.”

The public viewing will be August 28-29 at the Charles H. Wright Museum, and August 30 at New Bethel Church. The private funeral service for family, friends and selected guests will be held August 31 at Greater Grace Church. Aretha Franklin will be laid to rest at Detroit’s Woodlawn Cemetery.





All Rights Reserved   2003-2018 Tell Us USA
Disclaimer  Policy Statement
Site Powered By Tell Us Worldwide Media Company - Detroit, Michigan. USA