Whitney Houston's Funeral Details Sound Perfect for Her Farewell

Whitney Houston may have suffered her fair share of troubles towards the end of her life, but in death, she's being treated as the iconic superstar everyone remembers. Her body has been returned to her birthplace in New Jersey—flown from California via private jet and transported to the funeral home in a golden hearse.

The jet is said to belong to filmmaker Tyler Perry, who reportedly rushed to the hospital as soon as he heard about Whitney’s death, and immediately offered up his private plane to the family. Houston's body arrived in Jersey last night at 10:30, before being taken to the Whigham Funeral Home in Newark, where grieving fans waited to welcome her home.

As for the funeral, it sounds like it will be the perfect tribute to a much-cherished music icon.

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The private ceremony will begin at noon on Saturday at Newark's New Hope Baptist Church, which is where Houston first sang as a choir girl. It sounds like the perfect location for the service, since the church is also where her mother, Cissy Houston, served as musical director and her cousin Dionne Warwick also sang.

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It also seems like a more private, intimate setting for such a personal event, and I'm glad the early rumors that there would be a service at Newark's Prudential Center—an arena that seats 19,000—turned out to be untrue. I mean, I can understand the desire for a big star-studded farewell like Michael Jackson's, but it seems like that's all about what the public wants, rather than the family.

The owner of the funeral home has said that there would be no public memorial for Houston, per the family's wishes:

They have shared her for 30 some years with the city, with the state, with the world. This is their time now for their farewell. The family thanks all the fans, the friends, and the media, but this time is their private time.

On Monday, mourners left flowers, balloons, and candles for Houston at the New Hope church, which seats only 300. Naturally, the tabloids are already theorizing about who will be invited to the private event, but at least the fans seem to understand those details aren't important. Those gathering around the funeral home today said they understood the family's decision, with one fan saying that today was the perfect day for honoring Houston's memory:

People are still showing her love — not so much because of her death but because of her legacy. What better day to show love? It's Valentine's Day, the love goes on.

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I'm sure it will be a lovely service, and it seems more appropriate to have it in her childhood church rather than some enormous arena. Now if only the cameras would leave the family alone on Saturday ... but sadly, you know that's not going to happen.

Do you think there should have been a public memorial for Whitney Houston?



Image via Flickr/tm_10001

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