Singer Aretha Franklin gravely ill in hospital

Getty									The Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin is reportedly hospitalized and gravely ill

The 76-year-old singer's family is "asking for prayers and privacy", according to Roger Friedman's Showbiz411 website.

The "Queen of Soul" is said to be gravely ill and is now surrounded by her loved ones who are preparing for the worst. Her final public performance was in Philadelphia in August 2017.

Fans from around the world have offered thoughts and prayers to Franklin and her family.

Speaking to Detroit radio station WDIV Local 4, she said: "I must tell you, I am retiring this year".

She was performing but canceled a series of concerts citing doctors orders.

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Aretha Franklin performs on stage at the Elton John AIDS Foundation Commemorates Its 25th Year And Honors Founder Sir Elton John During New York Fall Gala.

Last year, she was forced to deny a cruel death hoax after a tweet went viral claiming she had died.

She was born in Memphis but raised in Detroit from the age of five and has enjoyed a career packed with highlights and unique achievements since her first album was released back in 1956.

Aretha was previously diagnosed with cancer in 2010, later confirming she had had a tumour removed.

Aretha's last public appearance was in November 2017, when she performed at a benefit in NY to mark the 25th anniversary of Elton John's AIDS Foundation.

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