Bill Clinton Eulogizes Aretha Franklin, and Compliments Her Many Lewks

Aretha Franklin funeral live stream Star on stage

The body of Franklin, who died aged 76 from pancreatic cancer, has been transported to the service in a 1940s vintage hearse, which carried both Rosa Parks and her father.

"And I say that because when word went out that Ms. Franklin passed, Trump said, 'She used to work for me,'" Sharpton continued.

Bill Clinton was among the speakers giving remarks at Aretha Franklin's funeral Friday afternoon in Detroit, and the former president's (lengthy) remembrance did not disappoint. "She worked for us", he said.

Franklin's nephew Vaughn, niece Cristal, granddaughter Victorie and grandson Jordan delivered comments, musical tributes and readings for their family's beloved matriarch.

He also took the opportunity to fire back at President Donald Trump, who had tried to claim part of Franklin's legacy as his own after her death, claiming "she worked for me" because she had performed at his failed casino.

Former US president Bill Clinton extolled her gifts, courage and compassion, sharing his memory of her final public performance, in November 2017, when she was already ill but performed with gusto.

"We started out not as a president, a first lady, senator, secretary of state", Clinton said, referencing his wife, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who was sitting nearby.

The former president recalled being an "Aretha groupie" all his life and being thrilled to meet her backstage at her last public performance, a benefit in Harlem for Elton John's AIDS charity past year.

"How you doing, baby?" she asked him. It will be marked by a different discipline, another kind of order, taking a different path home with eulogies from former presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush. "That's the best way that I can put it".

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Clinton said, "I wonder what my friend has got on today". He then played "Think" on his phone and held it up to the mic.

"It's the key to freedom".

Missing the Queen of Soul's funeral?

Obama, in a statement read by the Rev. Al Sharpton, hailed Franklin for reflecting "very best of the American story". The vast amount of people who flocked to the ceremony was a true testament to the influence Aretha had on the world around her. Aretha was an 18-time Grammy victor, but her reach was more profound than what can be marked by numbers and awards.

Franklin influenced generations of singers from the late Whitney Houston to Beyonce, with unforgettable hits including "Respect" (1967) and "I Say a Little Prayer" (1968).

Additionally, among those honoring Franklin Friday were about two dozen owners of Pink Cadillacs who arrived at the church early Friday.

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan took to the podium to announce a proposal to rename the city's waterfront Chene Park after Franklin.

Jackson said Franklin had perhaps the most remarkable and unique voice that the world has ever heard.

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