February 12th, 2012
08:31 PM ET

Whitney Houston: What we know, what questions remain

An outpouring of grief was seen from celebrities, fans and beyond on Sunday following the death of songstress Whitney Houston, 48, on Saturday at a Beverly Hills, California, hotel.

Whitney Houston: Powerful voice, stunning beauty, personal trials

However, answers about her final moments were in short supply amid a police investigation into her death - which occurred hours before she was to attend a pre-Grammy party.

What we know:

Authorities were called to Houston's hotel room at 3:43 p.m. Saturday after her bodyguard found her unconscious. Houston was found in the room's bathtub, a coroner's spokesman confirmed. He would not confirm or deny a report by the entertainment news website TMZ that pill bottles were found at the scene. Someone in her entourage removed her from the tub and attempted CPR, the spokesman said. Houston was pronounced dead at 3:55 p.m., authorities said.

There were "no obvious signs of criminal intent," said Beverly Hills police Lt. Mark Rosen.

See the latest details here

While Houston had battled drug addiction for years, she was attempting a comeback, playing a few shows and working on a movie, "Sparkle," set for release this summer. An unnamed music industry executive, who was staying in the room above Houston, said she had seen Houston and her daughter swimming in the hotel pool a few days ago. The two looked happy, she said, and Houston looked healthy and beautiful.

Her daughter, Bobbi Kristina Brown, 18, was taken to Los Angeles' Cedars-Sinai Medical Center on Sunday, police in Beverly Hills said. No information on her condition was available, but CNN's Casey Wian reported Brown was released after treatment.

Houston's former husband, entertainer Bobby Brown, issued a statement Sunday:

"I am deeply saddened at the passing of my ex-wife," the statement read. "At this time, we ask for privacy, especially for my daughter, Bobbi Kristina. I appreciate all of the condolences that have been directed toward my family and I at this most difficult time."

Fallen stars from same musical era

The party Houston was set to attend Saturday night was hosted by Clive Davis, her mentor. It went on as scheduled, but Houston's death cast a shadow over the event.

Photos: Whitney and her famous friends

"I do have a heavy heart, and I am personally devastated," Davis told the gathering of artists and entertainers that included Tony Bennett, Gladys Knight and Britney Spears. He asked for a moment of silence, and said, "My heart goes out to her daughter, Bobbi Kristina, and her mother, Cissy."

Humble beginnings in church choir

The big questions:

However, many questions swirled Sunday about the cause of Houston's death. The Los Angeles County coroner's office announced late Sunday that an autopsy had been completed, but determination of a cause of death had been deferred pending toxicology testing, which could take six to eight weeks.

"At this time there's no signs of foul play," a coroner's spokesman said. He said Houston's family can proceed with funeral arrangements.

Meanwhile, Houston fans gathered outside the hotel Saturday night, lighting candles and placing roses outside.

How did Whitney Houston touch your life?

"Everyone has their own demons, and some overcome them and some never do," said fan Tya Conerly.

And with the Grammy Awards set for Sunday night, organizers hastily put into motion plans to honor Houston during the ceremony, with the help of singer Jennifer Hudson.

See what celebrities and friends are saying

There will be a "respectful musical tribute," said Ken Ehrlich, executive producer. "It's too fresh in everyone's memory to do more at this time, but we would be remiss if we didn't recognize Whitney's remarkable contribution to music fans in general, and in particular her close ties with the Grammy telecast and her Grammy wins and nominations over the years."

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Filed under: Music • Showbiz • Whitney Houston
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  1. recoveryme

    First let me say that I'm a recovering addict of 12 years and I say recovering because nobody is promised a clean tomorrow ! I'm no Whitney but I probably spent as much if not more on drugs throughout my drug yearswhich started at the age of 13 something Im not proud of but yet it's reality .I just hope when I die the first thing that comes to peoples minds is not did she die from drugs ! I read so many negative comments about Whitney that it hurts my soul ! Let the results come out first before you jump to all kinds of conclusions , let her family mourn especially her Daughter and Mother I pray more than you know that drugs where not the reason and will shout for joy when they say it's not and if it was people oh well she was a Human Being first a person with a soul a person with feelings who left behind a daughter with feeling so please back off and take a moment to look at your own life and your imperfections and let Whintney Rest In Peace !!!!

    February 17, 2012 at 5:50 pm | Report abuse |
  2. CRIS

    As I sit here and read all these comments, I'm NOT amazed at the level of ignorance some of you are portraying, I do believe the rude comments are to get a rise out of those who disagree SO I'm NOT going to touch on it. I will say, I was deeply saddened by Whitney's passing( and let me tell you, I am NOT one of those pro celebrities. I DONT watch such shows like TMZ or Entertainment Tonight. I have MY OWN LIFE AND DEMONS to worry bout and knowing that Angelina Jolie just adopted her 20th third world country, doesnt enlighten my day by any means ) I watched her going home service and cried a few tears. Hearing Dion call her Nippy, well that just solidified that this woman was just plain ol Nippy to her family. The ones who saw her take her first steps as a baby, changed her diapers , feed and clothed her and made sure she had a baptist upbringing. These people loved her. I know we all say, well if i die, whitney houston wouldnt care, well DUH! Im sure if your death was a tragic death that made national headlines, celebrities ( they ARE HUMAN BEINGS TOO ) may actually care. People can only be aware of what is made readily available to them., We dont know Whitney Houston enough to judge ANYTHING. What I DO KNOW IS , it was tragic , she passed too early and will be missed in the music world. She set a precidence for music and NO ONE will vocally compare. She was amazingly beautiful. All of those people who cant muster up one nice thing to say about this woman are miserable souls who, one day will meet their maker. I only hope YOUR god doesnt judge you the way you wrongfully judge others. R.I.P Ms Houston. Ill hear you sing one day, when i too....meet my maker. END

    February 27, 2012 at 9:55 am | Report abuse |
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