In response to the news of the death of Gospel music legend Andrae rouch, US President Barack Obama has released a statement of mourning. "Michelle and I were saddened to learn of the passing of music legend Pastor Andrae Crouch," the Commander in Chief said before citing the singer as "a leading pioneer of contemporary gospel music."
"We are grateful that his music and spirit will continue to live on for years to come and our thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends and fans during this time," Obama added.
The singer and songwriter died at age 72 on Jan. 8, after suffering a heart attack. New Christ Memorial Church is honoring Crouch with public memorial services referred to as "a celebration of Andrae Crouch's life" in the coming week, including a viewing on Tuesday, Jan. 20, a tribute that evening, another viewing on Wednesday, Jan. 21, as well as a four-hour celebration of his life, according to the church's website.
"In lieu of flowers, please send tax-deductible donations to: Andrae Crouch Memorial Fund," the church posted on its website.
The seven-time Grammy Award winner is famous for bridging "Jesus music" with mainstream music. Crouch's songs such as "The Blood Will Never Lose Its Power, "My Tribute (To God Be the Glory)" and "I'll Be Thinking of You" have played in churches around the world and have been recorded by artists that include Elvis Presley and Paul Simon. Also a choir director, Crouch worked on Michael Jackson's "Man in the Mirror" as well as Madonna's "Like A Prayer."