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Whitney Houston: Her Life in the Public Eye

USMagazine, Sunday, February 12, 2012, 6:47am (PST)

Whitney Houston was graced with one of the most distinctive, powerful voices in pop history -- and she didn't look bad, either.

As authorities in Beverly Hills investigate the "Greatest Love of All" singer's shocking Saturday death at age 48 -- "no foul play" is suspected -- fans worldwide are remembering Houston for her musical legacy, her troubled life and her unforgettable face.

PHOTOS: Whitney's life in pictures

Before becoming the most awarded female artist in history (according to the Guinness Book of World Records), with over 170 million albums sold and a string of classic number one hits, Newark, NJ native Houston also worked as a model.

She put her dazzling, charismatic smile to good use at countless red carpet events over the years, even as she succumbed to drug and alcohol addictions and a volatile relationship with husband Bobby Brown, whom she divorced in 2007 after 15 years.

PHOTOS: Shocking celebrity deaths of 2011

In an infamous, addled 2002 interview with Diane Sawyer, Houston uttered "crack is wack" as she admitted to abusing cocaine, marijuana and pills. Seven years later, she told Oprah Winfrey she was clean and sober, and detailed her marriage to Brown. "He slapped me once," she said. "And spit on me...He was my drug." (She and Brown shared daughter Bobbi Kristina, now 18.)

PHOTOS: Whitney's bizarre plane outburst last year

Two days before she was pronounced dead, Houston appeared "shaky" and "moody" exiting Tru Hollywood past midnight following a performance; Brown, 43, took the stage hours after Houston's death, sobbing onstage as he struggled to perform songs with New Edition.

Watch this video of Houston's dazzling appearance throughout her storied career and troubled life.

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