Legendary singer Aretha Franklin has become engaged to her long-time friend William Willie Wilkerson at the age of 69, according to reports.
Here are five things to know about the Queen of Soul's marriage:
- Reports say that Franklin and Wilkerson became engaged over the holidays.
- It will be Franklin's third marriage.
- Reports say that the Queen of Soul's wedding will be held this summer in Miami Beach, Fl., and that after the ceremony, she and Wilkerson will welcome all the wedding guests at a reception on their private yacht.
- She is considering Vera Wang, Valentino and Donna Karan to design her dress.
- Franklin, who has four children, joked with the AP, saying No, I'm not pregnant.
Franklin's first marriage was to Ted White in 1961. White subsequently became Franklin's manager, having one son with Franklin in 1964 named Ted White Jr. Franklin and White divorced eight years later in 1969, and, by the end of that year, Franklin was already in a relationship with road manager Ken Cunningham. Franklin and Cunningham had a son named Kecalf before they split in 1976. Franklin then got married for the second time in 1978 to actor Glynn Turman. Turman and Franklin didn't have any kids.
Franklin, who lost 85 pounds, sparked rumors that she had gone under the knife for gastric bypass surgery, rumors that Franklin herself denied.
Definitely not-and would not, Franklin replied to the question of surgery from Access Hollywood in March. I heard that rumor. I said, 'That is crazy.'
Franklin also addressed the rumor that she had pancreatic cancer, saying to Access Hollywood in January, I don't know where pancreatic cancer came from. I was sitting there reading the newspaper and it was saying someone in my family said that. No one in my family ever said that to anybody.