Whitney Houston’s 50th birthday: Most memorable moments (SLIDESHOW)

Today marks what would have been the 50th birthday of legendary singer Whitney Houston.

The chart-topping performer broke onto the scene in 1985 with her first album Whitney Houston. That record-breaking album launched her career in music which would turn into a decades-long profession as one of the industry’s most iconic stars.

Over the span of more than 30 years, Houston earned seven Grammy awards, 22 American Music Awards, 31 Billboard Music Awards and one Academy Award, among many other distinguishing honors.

Her crossover from music to movies also proved Houston’s multi-talented skills with her role in 1992’s The Bodyguard – a movie which featured a record-breaking soundtrack album. She also starred in The Preacher’s Wife and 2012’s Sparkle.

After marrying and divorcing R&B singer Bobby Brown, welcoming a child and her battles with drug abuse, Houston’s personal life turned public and she became the subject of much scrutiny.

But despite the unexpected and unfortunate news that made it to the press, none was more shocking than the reveal of the singer’s death on Feb. 11, 2012.

Houston was found dead in a hotel room in L.A. after she drowned in the bathtub. Authorities reported there was cocaine in her system.

Her death came the day before the 54th annual Grammy Awards were scheduled to air and the award show dedicated special performances to honor the fallen singer.

Now, a year-and-a-half since Houston’s death, her memory continues to live on through the amazing contributions and influences she made to music, pop culture and her millions of fans around the world.

Follow Lilly Workneh on Twitter @Lilly_Works