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Funeral Home Denies Leaking Open Casket Photo of Whitney Houston to National Enquirer

Whitney Houston
Miguel Villagran, Getty Images

The owner of the funeral home where Whitney Houston was laid to rest is firing back at allegations that she or her staff leaked the notorious open casket photo of the star to the National Enquirer. Carolyn Whigham, second-generation CEO of the Whigham Funeral Home in Newark, N.J., told the New York Daily News that she is “horrified” by the accusations — and at the backlash resulting from them.
“We did not take that photo. We did not sell the photo. We would never do something like that,” Whigham told the News. “Whitney was a friend. I’m the one who flew to Los Angeles and got Whitney from the coroner’s office. I did everything to protect her.”

Whigham adds that Tyler Perry, who spoke at Houston’s funeral and lent his private plane to retrieve Houston’s body, vouched for her. “I am very confident they are on the same page with me. Family friend Tyler Perry was on the Steve Harvey (radio) show this morning, and he said emphatically he knows we did not do it.”

Whigham also pointed out that Houston’s casket was under tight security until her burial on Sunday, Feb. 19, with reports alleging that a whopping 10 security guards remained the the casket 24/7. In the same statement, Whigham added a comment that may shed light on the guilty party. “They were there 24 hours a day. They slept there with her. She was never alone, anywhere,” Whigham said of Houston’s casket’s security team. “The only time security fell back was when the family had the private viewing Friday. We weren’t involved with that. The family invited its own guests.”

Whigham also disputed the National Enquirer’s claim that Houston was buried wearing $500,000 worth of jewelry, telling the News, “That’s crazy. It’s not true.”

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