Tuesday 20 November, 2018

Hundreds line up to pay respects to Aretha Franklin

FILE-In this Oct. 31, 2005 file photo, Rosa Parks' coffin lies in the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit. Aretha Franklin will lie at the museum for two days before her funeral will be held at Greater Grace Temple in Detroit. (Susan Tusa/Detroit Free Press via AP, Pool)

FILE-In this Oct. 31, 2005 file photo, Rosa Parks' coffin lies in the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit. Aretha Franklin will lie at the museum for two days before her funeral will be held at Greater Grace Temple in Detroit. (Susan Tusa/Detroit Free Press via AP, Pool)

The Latest on the first day of a public viewing of Aretha Franklin at a storied Detroit museum (all times local):

7:30 a.m.

Hundreds of people are lining up to pay their final respects to Aretha Franklin.

Fans outside Detroit's Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History have been talking about their memories of the Queen of Soul as they wait before dawn Tuesday for the start of public viewing. Occasionally the crowd bursts into song.

Many of those in line are from Detroit, but others travelled from as far as Las Vegas and Miami.

Paula Marie Seniors says the setting for the public viewings Tuesday and Wednesday couldn't be more fitting. The associate professor of Africana studies at Virginia Tech says Franklin is "being honoured almost like a queen at one of the most important black museums in the United States."

Franklin died August 16 at age 76 of pancreatic cancer.

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12 a.m.

Thousands are expected to pour into Detroit's Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History on Tuesday and Wednesday to pay their final respects to Aretha Franklin.

Paula Marie Seniors says the setting for the public viewings Tuesday and Wednesday couldn't be more fitting. The associate professor of Africana studies at Virginia Tech says Franklin is "being honoured almost like a queen at one of the most important black museums in the United States."

Seniors said the Queen of Soul was "a singer of the universe." Yet she added Franklin, who died at age 76 on August 16 of pancreatic cancer, also was "so unapologetically black" and "so proud of being a black woman."

The museum hosted a similar viewing for civil rights icon Rosa Parks after her 2005 death.