The legendary singer whose gospel-rooted singing and bluesy yet expansive delivery earned her the title “the Queen of Soul,” was diagnosed with cancer in 2010 and announced last year she was retiring from music.
She was admitted into the hospital on Monday after being in a critical state.
Franklin died at 9:50 a.m. at her home in Detroit, surrounded by family and friends, according to a statement on behalf of Franklin’s family from her longtime publicist Gwendolyn Quinn. The family statement said;
“The official cause of death was due to advance pancreatic cancer of the neuroendocrine type, which was confirmed by Franklin’s oncologist, Dr. Philip Phillips of Karmanos Cancer Institute in Detroit.”
Her death comes three days after a source close to Franklin told CNN’s Don Lemon that the singer was in hospice care.
“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. 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,” Franklin’s family said.
Dubbed the Queen of Soul, her death marks the end of an era in music and has been mourned across the entertainment world.
One of the industry’s best-selling artists, she sold in excess of 75 million records over six decades.
The singer had been reported to be in failing health for years and appeared frail in recent photos, but she kept her struggles private.
Her final public performance was last November, when she sang at an Elton John AIDS Foundation gala in New York.