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Remembering Aretha Franklin’s 2016 Thanksgiving NFL National Anthem

Recording artist Aretha Franklin performs the national anthem before the game between the Lions and the Vikings on Thanksgiving at Ford Field. Photo: Tim Fuller, USA TODAY Sports

By Fred Cromartie, Ed.D. |

By now I’m sure that the news of the passing of the legendary music icon Aretha Franklin has spread worldwide. With her passing we are left with the wonderful music and many songs that she sang in performing for music lovers all over the world.

Aretha Franklin had a voice that was powerful, ranging and comparable to no one. She was truly one of a kind.

Having seen her perform on television many times, one of the most memorable for me was her performance of the National Anthem on Thanksgiving Day 2016 at Ford Field before the Detroit Lions – Minnesota Vikings game. Detroit was her hometown, and the announcer stated, “Ladies and Gentlemen, To honor America, Miss Aretha Franklin!”

I invite you to take a look back at the Queen of Soul singing the National Anthem with her memorable soulful rendition, which is the only way that she sang in her performances.

The following source contributed to the writing of this article: https://ftw.usatoday.com/2018/08/aretha-franklin-died-national-anthem-lions-vikings-thanksgiving-video

Dr. Fred Cromartie is the Director of Doctoral Studies at the United States Sports Academy.

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