Aretha Franklin, the “queen of soul” known for hits like Respect and Think, has died in Detroit at the age of 76.
The Queen of Soul – best known for hits such as Respect, Think and I Say a Little Prayer – passed away in Detroit after battling ill health for several years.
The cause of her death on Thursday was advanced pancreatic cancer, her publicist Gwendolyn Quinn said. Funeral arrangements will be announced in the coming days.
Franklin’s family said in a statement they had lost their “matriarch and rock”, adding: “We have been deeply touched by the incredible outpouring of love and support we have received from close friends, supporters and fans all around the world. Thank you for your compassion and prayers.”
Diagnosed with cancer in 2010, Franklin was forced to cancel a handful of concerts earlier this year due to ill health and was ordered by doctors to rest for two months.
In February last year, the singer announced plans to retire from touring following the release of a new album.
In a statement, her family said: “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.”
The family also confirmed her death was due to advanced pancreatic cancer of the neuroendocrine type.