Taxes for Aretha Franklin’s childhood home paid off by donations

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Receipts show that taxes are now paid in full on Aretha Franklin's birthplace.

The home found itself at the center of conversation well before the icon's death.

"I knew the support was out there. They had to just know it was a genuine need," community activist Patricia Rogers said.

The Lucy Avenue home almost got demolished until a judge made a call to save it. And even now, it's barely standing.

Until Monday, the home had racked up a bill of $1,488 for weed cutting fees and taxes owed to the city and county.

"A lot of people came out from all over," said Vera House, the owner of the home.

House says strangers stepped up to show the icon the respect she deserves. But the fight to preserve her memory is far from over.

And Rogers says there's more to do.

"We are out of the woods as far as taxes are concerned," she said.

Next month, Judge Patrick Dandridge wants a plan together.

Rogers says it should be a no-brainer. She wants the home to undergo a makeover and be transformed into a museum.

The Franklin family agrees the house should stay in Memphis, saying it adds value and the legacy is here.