Following Saturday’s memorial service for Whitney Houston at Newark, New Jersey’s New Hope Baptist Church — an event that saw performances by artists such as Stevie Wonder and Alicia Keys, and a speech from Houston’s Bodyguard co-star Kevin Costner — the singer was finally laid to rest on Sunday during a private ceremony in Westfield. Whitney was buried next to her father John Houston at the Fairview Cemetery.
Houston’s memorial service and burial ended a week of much speculation and drama that arose in the wake of the “I Will Always Love You” chart-topper’s death on Saturday, February 11. Earlier last week, Houston’s ex-husband Bobby Brown was rumored to have not been invited to Saturday’s funeral service, but People later reported that he would be attending to show his support for his and Whitney’s 18-year-old daughter Bobbi Kristina. While Brown did attend the service, he left early after several supposed run-ins with security at the event.
Likewise, Houston’s godmother Aretha Franklin was expected to sing at the service, but had to cancel her appearance at the last minute due to health concerns. Alicia Keys filled in for her.
Houston was pronounced dead at the Beverly Hilton Hotel at 3:55 p.m. on the eve of the Grammy Awards. She was at the hotel preparing to attend Clive Davis’ annual pre-Grammy Awards gala. An autopsy on Houston’s body was performed last Monday, but no official cause of death has been announced yet.
A surge in sales of Whitney’s music has occurred in the week following her death, causing both her 2000 collection Whitney – The Greatest Hits to re-enter Billboard‘s Top 200 album chart at #6 and 1992 single “I Will Always Love You” to surface once again on the Hot 100, at #7.