Today mourners from all over the world flocked to Detroit to pay their respects to The Queen, Aretha Franklin as she lay in state for the first of two days of public viewing. The gold casket in which she lies is a fitting bed for a woman who’s style and panache were legendary. According to Page Six, crowds of people circled the block, some camping out overnight for a chance to say their goodbyes.
Page Six reports:
The massive crowd broke out in cheers as Franklin’s body was taken out of the classic car by a half-dozen white-gloved pallbearers and gingerly wheeled into the Charles H. Wright Museum.
It was no somber affair outside the museum, which also hosted Rosa Parks’ funeral in 2005. Franklin diehards snaked around the block and danced and sang as the songstress’ greatest hits blasted from speakers set up by a local radio station.
— Detroit Free Press (@freep) August 28, 2018
— Charlie Langton (@charlielangton) August 28, 2018
And of course Aretha didn’t arrive in some common black hearse. No, The Queen arrived in a tricked out, pearly white, vintage LaSalle.
The body of #ArethaFranklin arrived at the Charles H. Wright Museum in #Detroit this morning in this 1936 LaSalle from Swanson Funeral Home for the first day of public visitation. @freep pic.twitter.com/XPnpkVkMD7
— Kristen Shamus (@KristenShamus) August 28, 2018
— Kimberly P. Mitchell (@souldelightfull) August 28, 2018
Inside the museum, mourners were asked to put away their cell phones and were afforded only a brief glimpse of The Queen as she lay, dressed in “a long sleeveless dress with lace and sequins and matching sky-high Louboutins and made up in crimson-colored lipstick and nail polish”. And because it’s Aretha, she’s not going to be seen wearing the same thing twice.
“She’s not going to be wearing the same outfit [each viewing day]. Tomorrow, she’ll be wearing the red dress. On Thursday, she’ll be in a gold dress, and Friday, she’s wearing a gown,” he said.
Aretha’s body will be on display again tomorrow and will be celebrated with the concert of the century at her funeral on August 31st (family only, so dream on). I don’t know that we’ve seen a bigger or more elaborate funeral for an American since John F. Kennedy. And it’s fitting. Detroit was Aretha’s Camelot, and Aretha was our Queen.