No-one can live forever, but some people's legacies are set in stone. Aretha Franklin is thought to be living her final days on this Earth, though her loving family are staying by her bedside to see her off. The news was revealed yesterday, though it remains unclear exactly what is putting her life at risk.

Aretha Franklin at the Billboard Women in Music LuncheonAretha Franklin at the Billboard Women in Music Luncheon

The 76-year-old soul legend is thought to be extremely ill back home in Detroit after a lifetime of battling health issues and serious illnesses. Fans can take comfort in the fact that she is currently 'surrounded by family and people close to her', but reports are not looking good for her.

Showbiz 411's Roger Friedman shared the news on his column yesterday (August 12th 2018), explaining: 'She is gravely ill in Detroit. The family is asking for prayers and privacy.'

He added: 'She will be so missed as a mother, sister, friend, cousin.'

The Queen of Soul's health has been plagued over the years by chain-smoking, alcoholism, obesity and crash-dieting, not to mention a number of illnesses in recent years; from cancer in 2010 which she overcame, to several bouts of undisclosed health concerns in 2013.

Her health took a turn for the worst again early last year, and she was forced to cancel a string of tour dates. She lost a lot of weight, which she put down to her medication, and was even the subject of a death hoax in November.

The last ever show of the 'Respect' hitmaker was at Elton John's AIDS Foundation Gala on November 7th, while her last public show was at Philadelphia's Mann Center last August. 'It was a miraculous show as Aretha was already then fighting exhaustion and dehydration', said Friedman.

More: Aretha Franklin announces retirement

She announced that she was retiring at the end of the year in February last year, but insisted that she wouldn't be sitting around doing nothing and would focus instead on a number of small projects. It's unclear if any of her plans came to fruition, though she released her final album 'A Brand New Me' in November which featured a collection of archival recordings.