Amid the ongoing battle for Aretha Franklin’s estate, former President Barack Obama has inserted himself into the discussion and made a request for one sentimental item: the silver bow hat she wore to his 2009 inauguration.
According to the New York Times, “In court, though, the sons remain apart. Two of them, Edward and Kecalf, attended a recent hearing, where the judge considered whether to allow a distribution of some personal items as keepsakes to the sons but also to people like Barack Obama, who [David J. Bennett, the primary lawyer for the estate] said has asked for the elaborate silver bow hat that Franklin wore to his first inauguration.”
Strengthening this request is the fact that the hat’s designer, Luke Song of Mr. Song Millinery, has come forward to confirm Franklin wanted the former president to have the headpiece.
“She told me she wanted it at the Barack Obama Presidential Library, and I think that is exactly where it should be,” Song told Page Six. “[Franklin] loved Obama, I know, and I personally couldn’t think of any better place for it.”
The Times also reports that the claiming of assets has turned ugly over recent weeks, and the courts have had to get heavily involved to address family squabbles, while executors work on the tedious task of deciding who gets the inheritance.
“Aretha helped define the American experience,” the 44th POTUS once wrote about his dear friend. “In her voice, we could feel our history, all of it and in every shade—our power and our pain, our darkness and our light, our quest for redemption and our hard-won respect. May the Queen of Soul rest in eternal peace.”
The Barack Obama Presidential Library is scheduled to open in 2022.