(CBS) — She sang and lived with soul and style. Aretha Franklin, the “Queen of Soul” died at her home in Detroit on Thursday. Franklin, 76, had been in failing health, suffering from advanced pancreatic cancer, according to her publicist.
Franklin canceled planned concerts earlier this year after she was ordered by her doctor to stay off the road and rest up. She was originally scheduled to perform on her 76th birthday in March in Newark, New Jersey, and at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival in April.
A winner of 18 competitive Grammy Awards, Franklin was the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987. She also was honored with the Presidential Medal of Freedom — the nation’s highest civilian honor — in 2005.
Last year, the icon announced her plans to retire, saying she would perform at “some select things.” One of those select events was a gala for Elton John’s 25th anniversary of his AIDS foundation in November in New York City, where Franklin closed the event with a collection of songs including “I Say a Little Prayer” and “Freeway.”
She may be most famously known for songs like “Respect” and ‘Think”–which she memorably performed in the 1980s Chicago based film ‘The Blues Brothers.” In addition to “Respect” her other No. 1 Billboard hit was “I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me),” with George Michael. In all, 72 titles ranked in the Billboard 100.
She performed at Ravina in September, 2017–one of eight performances at the North Shore venue over the years.
Ravina released this statement:
“This isn’t the first time Aretha had us all crying. This once-in-ten-lifetimes talent took us to church over the radio in very turbulent times and in joyous times. She was an absolute joy to know, and in a way we all knew her. That’s what makes it especially hard when someone who was so much a part of our social fabric leaves us, and we have no personal way of saying goodbye. Put the records on. Let the tears flow. And pay her the respect that both the song and her life demanded. “
Franklin has had health scares before. In 2011, widespread reports claimed the diva was being treated for pancreatic cancer. In 2012, though she admitted tothat she was worried during her scare, there was nothing to worry about. She said at the time, “My health is wonderful. It is fabulous now.” Franklin added of any health issues, “It wasn’t bad.”
Celebrities like Missy Elliott and Diana Ross have been posting tributes on Twitter.