Late singer George Michael’s family is keen to keep details about his funeral under wraps because they don’t want fans turning up to the ceremony while they are trying to grieve for the legendary singer.
The Wham! singer will finally have a funeral this month, 10 weeks after his death on Christmas Day last year, after a coroner revealed earlier this week that he died of natural causes, reports dailystar.co.uk. A representative for the star refused to comment on “private matters” when asked if funeral details would be released soon.
The Highgate Cemetery in north London, where Michael is expected to be buried alongside his mother Lesley, also refused to give an indication about his funeral. “If you’re phoning about George Michael, I’m sorry we haven’t got any information for you,” a recorded telephone message at the cemetery said.
Michael’s body has been kept by the coroner since his death at his home in Oxfordshire in December after the initial post-mortem came back as “inconclusive”.
Following extensive testing — including toxicology — over the past two-plus months, it was announced on Monday by the coroner’s office that the Careless Whisper hitmaker died of dilated cardiomyopathy with myocarditis and fatty liver.
Michael passed away at the age of 53 after his heart failed to pump blood around his body due to an enlarged left ventricle, while his liver was also clogged up with fat.
How did George Michael die?
53-year-old George Michael was found dead in bed in his Oxfordshire home on Christmas Day by his boyfriend Fadi Fawaz.
The celebrity hairstylist said: “We were supposed to be going for Christmas lunch. I went round there to wake him up and he was just gone, lying peacefully in bed.
“We don’t know what happened yet. Everything had been very complicated recently, but George was looking forward to Christmas, and so was I.”
The cause of death was confirmed on March 7 by Darren Salter, senior coroner for Oxfordshire.
George Michael died of natural causes and had a dilated cardiomyopathy with myocarditis and fatty liver.
Previously a series of tweets on Fawaz’s accounts said the star’s death was suicide, but Fawaz later claimed he had been hacked.
The messages said: “The only thing George wanted is to DIE. He tried to kill himself many times…” and “finally he managed”.
A dramatic leaked 999 call from Fawaz after he discovered Michael’s body reveals he spent nearly an hour trying to wake the star before phoning for an ambulance.
Fadi, 43, is heard explaining: “I’ve been trying to wake him up for the last hour but it was not possible.
“He’s gone. He’s blue. He’s gone.”
The handler then asks where George’s body is and Fadi replies: “He’s in bed. Dead.
“He’s cold and he’s blue… yes, he’s very stiff.
“He’s dead… he’s dead.”
Asked by the operator if the singer is “beyond help”, Fadi reveals he has spent an hour trying to revive him.
The operator goes on to ask if George’s death was “expected”.
Fadi replies: “No, no, no, no, no, no, I’ve been waiting for him to wake him up for like, you know, for hours and he wouldn’t wake up, I went to wake him up and he was gone, you know, he’s not there.”
He adds: “It’s George Michael, you know, the singer?”
Fadi then wrongly gives George’s date of birth as July 25 instead of June 25.
The operator tells him the ambulance is on its way and not to move the body in the meantime before she hangs up.
Fadi has since been told he is not welcome at Michael’s funeral by members of his family.
In a statement, the star’s publicist said: “It is with great sadness that we can confirm our beloved son, brother and friend George passed away peacefully at home over the Christmas period.
“The family would ask that their privacy be respected at this difficult and emotional time.
“There will be no further comment at this stage.”
Who will inherit the Wham! singer’s millions?
Since his death, it has been revealed that George left an estimated fortune of £105million.
With no husband, children or obvious heirs to the estate, it is believed that the money will be split among his many godchildren.
These include Martin Kemp’s children Roman and Harley, his cousin Andros’ two children, and Geri Halliwell’s daughter Bluebell, whose actual godfather is George’s ex partner Kenny Goss.
It is also expected that his boyfriend Fadi, as well as his sisters Melanie and Yioda could also get a cut from the estate.
How did fans reacted to his death?
When it was announced that George had died, millions flocked to Twitter to share their tributes for the fallen icon, with Elton John and Madonna just two of the celebrities who sent their regards.
Fans also flocked to his homes to lay flowers and letters, and to unite in their grief for the loss of the generation-defining icon.
As well as this, streaming service Spotify marked a staggering three THOUSAND per cent increase in his music being listened to in the days following his death – truly proving that his hits will ensure he lives on with people for a long time to come.
George Michael as himself in self-deprecating scene with Ricky Gervais in Extras
A statement released on behalf of the family said: “The family and close friends of George have been touched beyond words by the incredible outpouring of love for him in the hours and days since his death.
“For someone whose life was ultimately about his music and the love he had for his family and friends, his fans and the world at large, there could be no more fitting tribute than the many, many, kind words that have been said and the numerous plays his records have received.
“Contrary to some reports, there were no suspicious circumstances surrounding his death, and from the bottom of our hearts we thank those who, rightly, have chosen to celebrate his life and legacy at this most distressing of times.”
Brit popstar Adele paid an emotional tribute to Michael at the Grammy awards – singing his hit Fast Love.
But mid-way through the track she stopped and asked for it to be re-started.
She said: “I can’t do it again, not after last year, I can’t mess this up for him.
“I’m sorry for swearing, I’m sorry [Grammy producer] Ken [Ehrlich].
“I’m going to start again, I’m sorry, I’m sorry for swearing.”
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