Franklin participates in street-renaming ceremony for father

June 25, 2016

DETROIT (AP) — Aretha Franklin has participated in a street-renaming ceremony for her late father at the Detroit church where he was a longtime pastor and prominent civil rights leader.

Franklin played piano and sang Friday at New Bethel Baptist Church for hundreds gathered to celebrate the renaming of part of Linwood Avenue to Rev. C.L. Franklin Boulevard. The Detroit Free Press and Detroit News report that attendees included gospel singer Yolanda Adams, TV judge Greg Mathis and the Rev. Jesse Jackson.

C.L. Franklin, who died in 1984, was a good friend of Martin Luther King Jr. Franklin helped organize King’s 1963 march in Detroit that previewed his March on Washington that year.

Aretha Franklin tells the Free Press the street renaming is “an acknowledgement of his contributions to the city and country.”