Tuesday, July 26, 2011

'Goodnight my angel, sleep tight': Mitch Winehouse's emotional goodbye to daughter Amy as Kelly Osbourne and Mark Ronson join family for her funeral

By Georgina Littlejohn and Sara Nathan

Emotional goodbye: Amy's father Mitch Winehouse was consoled outside the Golders Green Crematorium in North London

Mitch Winehouse paid an emotional tribute to his daughter Amy today as her friends and family came together for her funeral.

Telling stories about her childhood and how happy she'd been recently, Mitch ended his eulogy telling his daughter: 'Goodnight, my angel. Sleep tight.'

Among those paying their respects to the tragic star - who died at her London home aged 27 on Saturday - was her entire family, friends Kelly Osbourne, Mark Ronson and her music 'family' including her backing singers and manager.

Mummy and Daddy love you ever so much: Amy's parents arrive at the crematorium after the funeral service

A convoy of black vehicles with tinted windows silently made its way inside the Edgwarebury Cemetery in north London this lunchtime for the private funeral service.

Amy's spokesman Chris Goodman said: 'Mitch was funny, he told some great stories from her childhood. It was a celebration. He stressed many times that she had been more content than she had been in years. Mitch paid tribute to a lot of people from Amy's life.'

Talking about her boyfriend, film director Reg Traviss, he added: 'Mitch said that they were very much looking forward to their future together.'

Sibling sorrow: Amy's brother Alex followed their parents into the crematorium

2My darling: Amy's boyfriend Reg Traviss walks alone away from the service

Saying goodbye: Kelly Osbourne - wearing a beehive in tribute to her friend - and friend Remi Nicole arrive at Amy Winehouse's funeral this afternoon

In mourning: Producer and DJ Mark Ronson made his way to the service on foot as did Amy's friend Nick Grimshaw

Alfie Ezikiel, 55, from London said that around 150 guests had attended Amy Winehouse's funeral.

He added: 'Mitch's last words to Amy in his eulogy were "Goodnight my angel. Sleep tight. Mummy and Daddy love you ever so much."

'In the days before her death she told Mitch she was very happy, satisfied and content in her life. Janice was fine but she didn't do a eulogy.'

The service started with prayers, they read a meditation, Mitch gave a eulogy and there were final prayers.

The last song that was played at the ceremony was Carole King's hit So Far Away which was Amy's favourite song.

Another guest said: 'Mitch said "Amy will be carried in peoples' hearts". There is such a big and strong community that will be looking after the family and Mitch is a very strong guy.'

Amy was then cremated at the Golders Green Crematorium in north London after the service.

Family spokesman Chris Goodman said only family members and close friends would be present and added: 'Cremation is part of the family's tradition.'

Shiva - the Jewish ceremony of bereavement - will be observed for two days starting at 5pm today at the Schinder Hall at Southgate Progressive Synagogue.

Brave face: Dionne Bromfield, Amy's goddaughter, holds back her tears as she leaves the service

Kelly, one of Amy's best friends, had flown into the UK from Los Angeles as soon as she heard the news about her death.

Her face was solemn as she was driven into the cemetery and she appeared to have paid tribute to her friend by styling her hair in a beehive do, similar to Amy's trademark style.

Winehouse's bandmates, Zalon and Heshima Thompson, who were seen in tears outside her home yesterday, were also among the select group.

Remembering: Amy's singers Heshima and Zalon Thompson join the mourners including Amy's manager Raye Cosbert

Her singer songwriter friend Remi Nicole, who was very close to the star, was in tears as she got out of her car and Amy's manager Raye Cosbert cut a solemn figure as he joined the funeral party.

Kelly hid her eyes behind large dark 50s-style sunglasses and clutched a white rose in her hands.

She was followed into the service by another of Amy's close friends, DJ and producer Mark Ronson, who looked deep in thought as he arrived on foot alone.

There was a heavy security presence outside the cemetery as guests made their way inside.

One person not attending today was Amy's ex-husband Blake Fielder-Civil, who, according to sources, was refused compassionate leave from Armley Prison in Leeds.

Forlorn: Kelly looked deep in her memories of her friend as she walked around the crematorium

How did you know Amy? Kelly clutches a drink as she chats to fellow mourners outside the crematorium

Miles away: Kelly looked lost in the sea of mourners outside the crematorium

It was also reported that he had already been warned away from the funeral by Amy's father Mitch who 'hates his guts'.

The service, which, according to Jewish law, had to take place as soon as possible after the star's death, was conducted by Rabbi Frank Hellmer.

Pop stars: Mark Ronson leaves the church wearing a skull cap and joins singer Bryan Adams outside

A group of photographers and reporters lined the road opposite the cemetery and stood alongside a few dedicated fans who came to pay tribute.

The service comes after police revealed they will have to wait up to four weeks for the results of toxicology tests to establish her cause of death.

Thank you for being here: Mitch hugs mourners who comfort him as they arrive at the crematorium

Nice to see you: Mitch graciously talks to those who had come out to pay their respects and offer comfort to him and his family

A post-mortem examination carried out yesterday was inconclusive and an inquest has been opened and adjourned until October 26.

Fans have been flocking to Amy's Camden home, where she was found dead on Saturday afternoon, to pray, lay flowers and remember the Back To Black singer.

Sorrow: Friends of Amy - including her stylist (far left) - comforted each other as they left the funeral service

Good to see you: Mourners hug as they leave the service

Yesterday, Winehouse's father Mitch visited the street and said: 'Amy was about one thing and that was love. Her whole life was devoted to her family and her friends and to you guys as well. We're devastated and I'm speechless, but thanks for coming.'

Her boyfriend, film director Reg Traviss, also paid tribute to the singer and said he had lost 'my darling who I loved very much'.

Keeping her close: A mourner clutched a black and white photograph of Amy

Winehouse battled drink and drug problems throughout her career and news of her death was quickly followed by suggestions that it could be related to one or the other.

The troubled artist had cancelled all tour dates and engagements last month after a series of erratic public appearances. She was booed at a shambolic performance in Serbia.

Taking it all in: Following the funeral Amy's goddaughter Dionne Bromfield went to visit the shrine to the singer outside the north London home

Mitch, Amy's father told mourners that his daughter had managed to beat her battle with drugs months before her death.

He told the singer's friends and family: 'I will talk a lot about her fantastic recovery. Recently Amy found love with Reg.'

Gone but not forgotten: Amy's ashes are carried out of the Golders Green crematorium

For Amy: Hundreds of fans and friends of the singer had placed tributes, flowers, cards and even cans of beer and bottles of vodka outside her London home

'He helped her with her problems and Amy was looking forward to their future together. She was the happiest she has been for years.'

Mitch also told fans he hoped to set up a foundation in Amy's honour.

Private: Security guards and police kept guard at the entrance to the cemetery

Crowds: Fans of the late singer gathered in their hundreds outside the Golders Green Crematorium to pay their last respects

Celebrating her life: Friends and family gathered together at Southgate centre for Judaism to celebrate Amy's life

Fond memories: Amy's friends and family including Reg Traviss and Kelly Osbourne gathered together to share stories about the singer's life

Following the service and the cremation members of Amy's friends and family flocked to Southgate centre for Judaism to celebrate the singer's life.

Guest were seen recalling fond memories they had shared with the singer before her tragic death.

Meanwhile outside her Camden home fans held their own celebrations and were seen drinking, dancing and singer remembering the star.

Remembering the good times: Amy's goddaughter Dionne Bromfield shared a joke with a friend as Amy's family and friends celebrated her life

Own tribute: While Amy's family and friends mourned her loss together fans of the singer gathered together outside her London home to drink and dance in celebration of her life


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