Singer Whitney Houston’s Burial Sunday in New Jersey

Posted February 19th, 2012 at 4:00 am (UTC-5)
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Grammy award-winning singer Whitney Houston will be buried Sunday in her home state of New Jersey.

Authorities say security will be tight in and around the cemetery, in anticipation of fans flocking to the area to pay their final respects.

Houston will be buried next to her father, John Russell Houston Jr., at the Fairview Cemetery in Westfield.

The burial will be private, unlike her funeral Saturday, which the family shared via the Internet and TV broadcast.

Celebrities, including music greats, joined the final public tribute Saturday at her childhood church in Newark, New Jersey, where Houston sang in the choir as a child. Fans showed their love with hundreds of balloons, flowers and cards piled outside the church.

The service for the 48-year-old six-time Grammy award winner and actress took place a week after she was found unresponsive in a bathtub at the Beverly Hilton hotel in California.

A gold-painted hearse transported Houston's casket to the church early Saturday, a day after her family attended a private viewing of her body at a Newark funeral home.

Her mother, Cissy Houston, and daughter, Bobbi Kristina Brown, were joined at the viewing Friday by a host of relatives, including singer Dionne Warwick, Houston's cousin. Her mentor, music executive Clive Davis, also was there.

During Saturday's service, Warwick introduced a host of soul, gospel and pop music greats from the past and present, including Alicia Keys who performed the song Prelude to a Kiss.

Houston's mentor, Clive Davis told mourners, “You wait for a voice like that for a lifetime,” while her co-star in the movie, The Bodyguard, Kevin Costner, asked mourners to “remember the sweet miracle of Whitney.”

Music legend Stevie Wonder was among the performers at Saturday's invitation-only service. Houston's ex-husband, singer Bobby Brown, put in a brief appearance at the service, but close family friend, Aretha Franklin, was unable to attend because of health issues.

After the nearly four-hour-long service ended, Houston's casket was carried out as the haunting ballad that she once sang, I Will Always Love You, played over loudspeakers.

The cause of her death is not expected to be known for several weeks, pending toxicology results.

Houston sold more than 170 million albums, singles and videos, making her one of the world's best-selling artists.