Whitney Houston’s funeral kicked off at 12 p.m. Saturday at New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, N.J. where friends and family along with a few famous faces like Alicia Keys, ex-husband Bobby Brown and Ray J gathered to bid the late singer farewell.
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But it was her former co-star Kevin Costner that provided the most touching point of the service.
Houston’s friend and co-star of “The Bodyguard” Kevin Costner was on hand to deliver a touching eulogy at Houston’s funeral.
“So what becomes of our broken hearts?” he asked. “Whitney returns home today to the place where it all began and I urge us all, inside and outside, across the nation and around the world to dry our tears, suspend our sorrow and perhaps our anger just long enough, just long enough to remember the sweet miracle of Whitney.”
Costner explained how similar he and Houston were.
“We can’t forget Cissy and Bobbi Kristina sit among us. Your mother and I had a lot in common. A lot of people are thinking, really? You’re a boy, she’s a girl; she’s black, you’re white. I heard you like to sing, but our girl could really sing,” Costner said. “We both grew up in the Baptist church. It wasn’t as big as this. My grandmother played the piano and she led the choir. Her two daughters sang in it. My earliest memories are tied to that church in Paramount. Church was what we knew, it was our private bond.”
Costner went on to share his feelings on the late star, saying, “The Whitney I knew, despite her success and worldwide fame, still wondered ‘am i good enough? Am I pretty enough? Will they like me?’ It was the burden that made her great.”
“And that made her stumble in the end. Whitney, if you can hear me now, you weren’t just good enough… you were great,” he said.
The 48-year-old “I Will Always Love You” singer died a week earlier at the Beverly Hilton in California as she prepared for Clive Davis’ pre-Grammy Awards party. She was found unconscious underwater in the hotel room’s bathtub and attempts to revive her proved unsuccessful.
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Although the cause of death is unknown at this time, an autopsy confirmed there were no indications of foul play and no obvious signs of trauma. The official cause of death will be determined by the L.A. Co. Coroner’s Office following toxicology tests that could take a few weeks to complete.
Houston’s death was just one day shy of the Grammy Awards, a show that honored the singer six times in the past. The Grammy Awards kicked off without Houston the following day and featured a special tribute by Jennifer Hudson. Hudson performed a beautiful rendition of “I Will Always Love You.”
Check out Kevin Costner’s speech.