Sad news to report this Valentine’s Day weekend—singer, actress and model Whitney Houston has died at the age of 48. Details at this time are sketchy, but Houston’s publicist Kristen Foster has confirmed that Houston has passed. Read more after the jump. UPDATES BELOW.
UPDATE, SUNDAY 9 PM: TMZ notes that “a member of Whitney’s entourage found her in her 4th-floor room at the Beverly Hilton hotel … and called hotel security — who then dialed 911. When paramedics arrived Houston was found unresponsive.” Houston was last seen looking “disheveled” in Hollywood for a pre-Grammy party. Houston’s cause of death has yet to be determined.
UPDATE, Saturday 5:35 PM: According to TMZ, “Houston died at the Beverly Hilton hotel. A police crime lab vehicle was seen outside the hotel.”
The Seattle Times has it that “the singer had died, but the cause and the location of her death were unclear.” The story is still in development, and is likely to change as more and more details emerge on the sad and premature passing of one of America’s once-great R&B voices. What is known is that her image, legacy, and unforgettably powerful voice were tarnished in her later years by instability and drug use; it is currently unclear as to whether or not her abuse of drugs had anything to do with her death, however.
What is known is that Houston leaves behind one child, Bobbi Kristina, that she had with singer Bobby Brown, with whom she was married from 1992 to 2007.
What can also be confirmed, and should be remembered, is Houston’s contribution to pop music. The singer won six Grammys, 30 Billboard Music Awards, 22 American Music Awards, and two Emmys during her career. She was the first female singer to have an album debut at Number 1 on the Billboard Charts (Whitney), and sold 200 million albums worldwide, according to TMZ. She will also be remembered for her megahit “I Will Always Love You,” from her starring vehicle with Kevin Costner, The Bodyguard.
Again, look here for updates as this story develops.