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NJ.com: Whitney Houston funeral to be held Saturday at her Newark childhood church
Published: Tuesday, February 14, 2012, 10:08 AM Updated: Tuesday, February 14, 2012, 10:54 AM
Donna Gialanella/The Star-Ledger
NEWARK — The funeral for Whitney Houston will be held Saturday at the Newark church she attended as a child.
The pop icon will be mourned Saturday at noon at the New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, where Houston honed her musical skills singing in the choir, according to Carolyn Whigham, the owner of the Whigham Funeral Home.
Houston's funeral will be invitation only, Whigham said, and there will be no wake or public viewing at the Prudential Center. Houston will not be buried in Newark, she said.
Outside the funeral home this morning, nine satellite trucks and more than a dozen reporters and photographers from as far away as Brazil staked out positions hoping to spot Houston's famous family and friends. Earlier, a woman yelled "I love you Whitney" out of her passenger-side window as she drove past.
Houston's body was brought to Whigham late Monday night as fans crowded Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard to catch a glimpse. The crowd of around 40 sang songs and applauded.
Preparations were complete and no family would be returning to the funeral home, Whigham said today. The funeral home also handled Houston's father's funeral in 2003.
Houston was born in Newark and grew up in nearby East Orange.
A local community leader told The Star-Ledger Monday that Houston's funeral would be held Friday at the Prudential Center, possibly in a ceremony similar to that of Michael Jackson. It appears family members changed that plan late last night.
Staff writer Richard Khavkine contributed to this report.