Tina Turner’s hometown of Brownsville in Tennessee is intending on displaying a statue in memory of the late singer.
The legendary musician’s death was announced on Wednesday (May 24), with the 83-year-old passing away of natural causes in her residence in Zurich, Switzerland.
The award-winning singer sold 150 million albums worldwide, which included her classic hits ‘The Best’ and ‘What’s Love Got To Do With It?’. She was also dubbed the “Queen of Rock’n’Roll” following her extremely successful solo career during the 1980s and 1990s after leaving her husband and music partner Ike Turner in 1978.
“Today we say goodbye to a dear friend who leaves us all her greatest work: her music. All our heartfelt compassion goes out to her family. Tina, we will miss you dearly,” they added.
Turner was born on November 26, 1939, in Brownsville with the birth name Anna Mae Bullock. She attended Carver High School but at 16 years old moved to St. Louis to live with her mother after her grandma passed away. She then graduated from Sumner High School in 1958.
The city’s mayor, Bill Rawls Jr., recently spoke to TMZ and said that he plans to commemorate Turner’s remarkable career and has already obtained support from local leaders.
“When Tina stepped on stage, she owned it,” Mayor Rawls said about the significance of the project. “We want this statue to represent that passion. Tina was an inspiration to the entire world. She showed the people of Brownsville [that] no matter where you start, you own your story about where you end up.”
The dramatic movie starring Angela Bassett depicted how Turner and Ike burst onto the music scene during the 1960s and 1970s, and how Ike’s physically and sexually abusive behavior eventually forced Turner to quit the band and go solo.
After leaving her relationship, Turner had to rebuild her own career from the ground up, as Ike had copyrighted her name. Years later, she became a symbol of resilience for abuse survivors across the globe.
The ‘Proud Mary’ songstress went on to marry German music executive Erwin Bach in 2013, after being together for 27 years. The pair lived together in Switzerland in the years before her passing and Bach even donated a kidney to his life partner when her own failed in order for her to live longer.
Following her move to the European country, Turner eventually renounced her US citizenship, telling Larry King Live in 1997 why she chose to do so. “I have left America because my success was in another country, and my boyfriend was in another country,” the singer said at the time, adding: “Basically, Europe has been very supportive of my music.”
King then said: “But you’re a major star here, you’re a superstar in America,” to which Turner responded: “Not as big as Madonna. I’m as big as Madonna in Europe. In some places I’m as big as the Rolling Stones.”