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How Did Whitney Houston Die? The Complete Tragic Story

how did whitney houston die
How did Whitney Houston die? American singer Whitney Houston performing on Good Morning America (Central Park, New York City) on September 1, 2009. Image by Asterion Tecson on Wikimedia Commons.

Whitney Houston is one of the best-selling artists of all time. She was a singer with the kind of talent that defines a generation. However, reports of Whitney Houston’s tragic battles with substance abuse were well known. 

How did Whitney Houston die? Find out below, in addition to some facts about her life that you might not know.

How Did Whitney Houston Die?

Whitney Houston was found dead in her bathtub at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills on February 11, 2012. Houston was declared dead mere hours before she was due to perform at the annual pre-Grammy party hosted by Clive Davis.

The cause of death was determined to be an accidental drowning, with complications from heart disease and cocaine.

whitney houston death
Whitney Houston performing “Greatest Love of All” during the HBO-televised concert “Welcome Home Heroes with Whitney Houston” honoring the troops, who took part in Operation Desert Storm, their families, and military and government dignitaries. Photo by Ph2 Mark Kettenhoffen on Wikimedia Commons.

When Did Whitney Houston Die and How? 

According to an article by People Magazine, Houston was declared dead by accidental drowning by the Los Angeles County Coroner’s Office on February 11, 2012.

The Coroner’s Office was quoted as saying:

“I can confirm that Whitney Houston was pronounced dead at 3:55 p.m. at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. We received a call at 3:43 p.m. from hotel security and Beverly Hills fire and police responded minutes later”

Someone in Houston’s entourage had discovered her lifeless body and contacted staff and emergency services, who tried to resuscitate her. Unfortunately, the singer had already passed and could not be revived.

Related: Whitney Houston’s Net Worth: Her Houses, Cars, Career, and More 

How old was Whitney Houston when she died? 

Whitney Houston was born on August 9, 1963, and died on February 11, 2002, at the age of 48. 

She is survived by her mother Cissy, a formidable talent in her own right. Cissy was a gospel singer that could hold her own and would oversee Whitney’s vocal training all her life. 

She had a complicated relationship with a daughter that had so much talent and had fallen into addiction.

When asked about her daughter’s death in an interview with My9’s Brenda Blackmon, Cissy stated: 

“I’m very proud of my daughter. She accomplished a whole lot in the short time that she had here…she was a very wonderful person.”

Related: How Exactly Did Michael Jackson Die? The Death of a Superstar 

What was Whitney Houston’s net worth at the time of her death?

When Whitney Houston died, it became apparent that the star had spent her money much faster than she was able to earn it.

Her tragic battles with addiction and her tumultuous relationship with Bobby Brown took their toll, and Whitney Houston’s net worth at the time of her death was negative $20 million. She was deeply in debt at the time of her death. 

The height of her career was wildly different. At its peak, her net worth was $40 million.

A Troubled Relationship with Bobby Brown

Whitney Houston and Bobby Brown famously had one of the most volatile relationships in Hollywood.

They met at the Soul Train awards in 1989 and would go on to marry three years later on July 18, 1992. 

The root of the couple’s tumultuous relationship was drugs and alcohol. From the inception of the relationship, both successful stars had heavily invested in booze and drugs. 

Allegations of domestic violence would only fuel the flames. Brown was charged with battery after an assault on Houston, although the couple would remain together, only divorcing in 2007.

 

Whitney Houston’s Children 

Whitney and Bobby Brown would have one child together, Bobbi Kristina Houston Brown. Bobbi would spend her life in the spotlight due to her famous parents and also her appearance on the reality TV show “Being Bobbi Brown.”

Bobbi had dreams of following in her mother’s footsteps and aspired to be a singer and performer. She would perform several times with her mother. She would further echo her famous mom’s legacy in the most tragic of ways.

Related: How Did Amy Winehouse Die? The True Story Behind the Singer’s Tragic Death 

How Far Apart Did Whitney and Her Daughter Die? 

Whitney Houston and her daughter, Bobbi, died a mere three years apart in eerily similar circumstances.

On January 31, 2015, Bobbi was found unconscious in her bathtub at her home in Duluth, Georgia. 

She was found by her husband, Nick Gordon, and a friend. Bobbi was found floating face down in the tub, and her husband started CPR immediately.

However, when she arrived at the hospital, medical staff noted that her brain function had been dramatically diminished due to swelling in the brain. She was put into a medically induced coma.

Bobbi Kristina Brown would never wake from her coma and passed away at Peachtree Christian Hospice in Duluth, Georgia, on July 26, 2015. She was 22 years old.

Are Whitney and her daughter buried together? 

Whitney Houston was buried on February 19, 2012, at the Fairview Cemetery and Arboretum in Westfield, New Jersey. She was laid to rest next to John Russell, her father, who had died in 2003.

Whitney’s only child would be buried alongside her. 

On August 3, 2015, after being transported to the Fairview Cemetery and Arboretum from a memorial service in Newark, Bobbi was buried next to Whitney Houston and John Russell.

Related: What We Know About the Death of Marvin Gaye 

Why Was Bobby Brown Kicked Out of Whitney Houston’s Funeral?

Long-standing grievances between the Houston family and Bobby Brown’s family came to a head at Whitney Houston’s funeral.

Bobby Brown would leave his ex-wife’s funeral before the service even began. The funeral service was held at New Hope Baptist Church in Newark on February 19, 2012.

Brown had been invited by the Houston family to attend the service. However, upon arriving, Brown wanted to sit with the rest of the family in the same pews as the Houstons. However, he and his guests were asked to leave.

When asked about the situation, Bobby Brown stated that his group, including four of his other children, were repeatedly asked to move and were denied access to his daughter Bobbi Kristina.

whitney houston cause of death
Whitney Houston in Milan. Image by Luca Viscardi on Wikimedia Commons.

Is Bobby Brown to Blame for Whitney’s Death?

Controversy followed the death of Whitney Houston, with lots of speculation as to whether her troubled relationship with her ex-husband Bobby Brown had contributed to her death.

However, in 2021, the documentary Bobby and Whitney aired, which gave a balanced perspective on the situation. While their relationship was tulmultuous, Bobby Brown was not directly involved in Whitney Houston’s death.

Whitney Houston’s Legacy

Whitney Houston was one of the most consequential singers of her generation, which is why so many people wonder, ‘how did Whitney Houston die?’

Though she died tragically, she’ll always be remembered for the joy she brought millions of people.

Check out some of our other articles:

How Did Prince Die? The Story Behind his Drug-Related Death 

20 Facts About Rihanna: Her Real Name, Birthdate, Net Worth, Nationality, and More

19 Best Pop Songs for Your Playlist 

Best 90s Songs: The Top 15 Tracks from An Unforgettable Decade 

Written by Music In MN

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