Aretha Franklin's family 'appreciates' support

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"She is resting and surrounded by close friends and family", he wrote.

Aretha's publicist Gwendolyn Quinn told Associated Press that the 76-year-old has been visited by family and friends including Stevie Wonder, her ex-husband, actor Glynn Turman and USA activist Reverend Jesse Jackson.

Record executive Clive Davis, who signed Franklin to Arista Records in 1980, is said to be organising the event at Madison Square Garden this November, according to Showbiz 411.

News from Franklin's camp concerning her health has been limited, but rumours began in March, when the singer cancelled two of her concerts in New Jersey.

She was the first woman to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987.

In a statement released to Express.co.uk, the publicist said: "Aretha Franklin has been the Matriarch of the Franklin family since the passing of all of her siblings". "I really don't know what it would be like not to have her".

She won 18 Grammy awards throughout her storied career, including one for Lifetime Achievement. A spokesperson for Franklin could not be reached for further details on her condition at press time.

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Clarence Waldron, Franklin's former publicist, said Wednesday he was grappling with the singer's health crisis. She nevertheless continued to perform until late past year.

When the news broke a couple of days ago that Aretha Franklin was battling an illness from which she might not recover, her fans all across the world joined together to pay tribute in whichever way they could.

He said he never inquired as to what was wrong with Franklin.

But there were no hard feelings by 2013, when Franklin defended Beyoncé for lip-syncing during her performance at President Barack Obama's second inauguration.

Her most recent performance was in November previous year at Sir Elton John's Aids Foundation's 25th anniversary gala in NY.

Waldron, who worked for the singer from 2014 to 2016, told the Detroit television station he's maintained a friendship with her.

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