Lionel Richie, Stevie Wonder and More Celebrate Natalie Cole at Her Funeral

Natalie Cole
Natalie Cole at the Mercedes-Benz USA and African American Film Critics Association Academy Awards viewing party in 2015 Chelsea Lauren/Getty Images

Natalie Cole was remembered and celebrated by fellow musicians Lionel Richie, Stevie Wonder and Smokey Robinson, among others, at her funeral on Monday, January 11. The “This Will Be (an Everlasting Love)” singer was celebrated with a nearly three-hour service at West Angeles Church of God in Christ in Los Angeles.

As previously reported, the late singer, who was the daughter of the famed Nat King Cole, died at the age of 65 on New Year’s Eve from pulmonary arterial hypertension, which led to heart failure induced by lung disease. 

Lionel Richie
Larry Busacca/Getty Images

Chaka Khan, Gladys Knight, David Foster, Angela Bassett, Rev. Jesse Jackson and Freddy Cole were among the hundreds of attendees who joined together at the Baptist church to say goodbye to the Grammy-winning artist.

“We must continue the spirit and kindness that this woman gave the world,” Wonder told the crowd, according to the Associated Press. “She left this country where people are so divided. We speak of love but we don’t do love. We’ve got a lot of work to do, Natalie, and we will do it in the spirit of you.”

Stevie Wonder
Larry Busacca/Getty Images

Richie also spoke at the funeral, telling the crowd: “I will always remember her laughter, her humor, her silliness, that voice and more importantly her friendship. There were many moments she was down and she picked me up.”

Following the service, Cole was buried at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California.

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