A Beverly Hills police officer told reporters they were called to the Beverly Hilton, in Los Angeles, at around 3:20 p.m. PST and that emergency personnel found Houston's body in a fourth-floor room, and she was pronounced dead at 3:55 p.m. In pic: Richard Branson, honoree at the pre-Grammy gala event that Whitney Houston was supposed to perform in, climbs stairs past a Beverly Hills Police Department Crime Lab vehicle parked behind the Beverly Hilton Hotel
Grammy-winning singer and actress Whitney Houston, one of the most talented performers of her generation who lived a turbulent personal life and admitted drug use, died on Saturday in a Beverly Hills hotel room. She was 48. A glimpse at her life and career.
The singer was born on August 9, 1963 in Newark, New Jersey. Her mom, Cissy, was a gospel singer. In the early 1980s, along with her singing career, Houston started working as a fashion model and she was the first coloured women to grace the cover of teen magazine 'Seventeen'.
Houston started out singing in her church gospel choir in New Jersey at age 11 and released her first album in 1985 after being discovered by record producer Clive Davis
Her self-titled debut album is listed as one of the 500 greatest albums of all-time by Rolling Stone and is on the Rock N Roll’s Hall of Fame definitive 200 album list. In pic: File photo of Whitney with Michael Jackson, Elizabeth Taylor and Liza Minnelli.
Her popularity soared in the 1980s and 1990s with consecutive No. 1 hits including the smash single "I Will Always Love You," from the soundtrack of the feature film "The Bodyguard," in which she starred along with Kevin Costner.
Houston married Bobby Brown on July 18, 1992. They divorced after 14 years and a tumultuous relationship fueled by drugs.
The last 10 years of Houston's life were dominated by drug use, rumors of relapses and trips to rehab. In a 2002 TV interview, she admitted using marijuana, cocaine, alcohol and prescription drugs. Picture shows Houston with former South African president Nelson Mandela.
She launched a comeback tour in 2009 and in April 2010 she called media reports she was using drugs again "ridiculous." In May 2011, Houston enrolled in a drug and alcohol rehabilitation program.