Aretha Franklin: Inside the Extravagant Public Viewing Honoring the Queen of Soul

Playing Fans Flock to Aretha Franklin’s Public Memorial in Detroit

Tuesday is the first of three days of a public viewing for the late Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin. 

Franklin, who died on Aug. 16 after a battle with cancer, is lying in repose at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit, Michigan, where thousands of fans are stopping by to pay tribute to the singer. 

An official photo of Franklin laying in her casket, clad in crimson and surrounded by pink flowers, was released for fans who cannot make it to Detroit to say farewell. 

“The family of Aretha Franklin wanted to take a respectful photo to share with her millions of fans around the world who could not attend the viewing,” Franklin's longtime publicist Gwendolyn Quinn told Inside Edition.

Franklin's dress has a lace bodice and sleeves with a netted skirt, while her red pumps are from Christian Louboutin. Her jewelry was custom made for the occasion. The casket is solid bronze with a 24-karat gold plate and costs $25,000.

The funeral home providing services for Franklin said she used to pay for funerals for families in need, calling the home to offer help — "usually in full without being asked or prompted to do so," Linda Swanson, executive vice president of Swanson Funeral Home, told The Associated Press.

Franklin's funeral is scheduled for Friday at Greater Grace Temple.

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