Whitney Houston Dies at 48
Singer Whitney Houston, who was as famous for her powerhouse pipes as she was for her later-in-life drug problems, has died at the age of 48.
According to USA Today, publicist Kristen Foster confirmed the news of Houston's passing this evening (Feb. 11). Whitney Houston reportedly died at 3:55PM PT (via CNN) at the Beverly Hilton hotel, and was found by her bodyguard. It was rumored that Whitney's boyfriend Ray J found her, but his publicist Courtney Barnes confirmed that was not the case.
The cause of the singer's death was not disclosed as of press time, but it's assumed that her party habit, as evidenced by the events from a Grammy party earlier this week, may have contributed to her health and ultimately, her death.
Houston rose to prominence on the back of major ballads like 'The Greatest Love of All' and her rendition of 'I Will Always Love You' from 'The Bodyguard' soundtrack. She also starred in the film and crossed over to acting successfully.
Houston's battles with drugs were well-documented and she once admitted to using cocaine and marijuana to TV talk show host Oprah Winfrey.
Houston was married to singer Bobby Brown in 1992 and appeared on the 'Being Bobby Brown' reality show with him in 2005. The couple divorced in 2007. Houston, the cousin of singer Dionne Warwick, is survived by their daughter, Bobbi Kristina.
Neil Portnow, President/ CEO of the Recording Academy released the following statement:
Six-time GRAMMY(r) winner Whitney Houston was one of the world's greatest pop singers of all time who leaves behind a robust musical soundtrack spanning the past three decades. Her powerful voice graced many memorable and award-winning songs. A light has been dimmed in our music community today, and we extend our deepest condolences to her family, friends, fans and all who have been touched by her beautiful voice.
UPDATE: Whitney was found underwater and on Xanax at the time of her death.