As the late Whitney Houston and singer Bobby Brown’s daughter Bobbi Kristina Brown remains hospitalized after being found face-down in a bathtub nearly a week ago, one of Houston’s friends from early in her career is furious at the 21-year-old’s heartbreaking plight.
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“I’m sad but I’m more angry. I want to fight someone,” said Grammy and Tony Award-winning singer and actress Jennifer Holliday, known for her longtime role in the Broadway hit “Dreamgirls.”
“I want to scream,” Holliday said. “I want to say, what have you done?”
Without naming names, Holliday said Bobbi Kristina has been let down by people who should have been looking out for her.
“From the time her mother died she should have been in constant therapy, under constant watch,” Holliday said. “She should have been allowed to grieve. She’s been surrounded by some of the worst people only looking out for their own interests.”
Holliday knew Houston when both were launching their careers in New York in the 1980s.
“I remember her being such a giving person,” said Holliday, who now lives in Atlanta. “She was strikingly beautiful as a teenager. She had this powerful voice. That didn’t faze her and her beauty didn’t faze her. She was a bright light.”
Her happy memories make her all the more aggrieved at Bobbi Kristina’s situation.
“This did not have to happen. Whitney’s didn’t have to happen either,” she said. Houston died at 48 just about three years ago, after being found face-down in the bathtub of her Beverly Hills hotel room. Holliday noted the grim parallel.
“Whitney’s only baby,” she said. “It’s a very heartbreaking day. What an unnecessary tragedy.”
Coincidentally, Holliday expressed her grief and outrage within hours of an Atlanta Police Department that officers had to respond to a “fight call” at a Midtown hotel among some of Bobby Brown’s relatives, presumably in town to offer support as Bobbi Kristina’s treatment continues.
In November 2012, then-19-year-old Bobbi Kristina was cited after Alpharetta Police Department officers responded to a call about a black Chevrolet Camaro that slid off the road and landed in a ditch. Coincidentally, later the same day Nick Gordon, her boyfriend at the time, was arrested after cops clocked him doing 82 in a 35 mph zone in Alpharetta.
“Sometimes things like that happen,” Gordon told Channel 2 at the time. “Everything’s cool. Everything’s fine.”
In January 2014, Bobbi Kristina announced via her Twitter feed that she an Gordon had tied the knot: “Wife of @ndgordon4life,” she posted, along with the hashtag #HappilyMarried.”
In July 2014, Bobbi Kristina lashed out after someone posted a photo purported to be her, smoking marijuana.
“I’ve never posted any photo of me doing anything!” she said at the time. “This is someone trying to tarnish and make a horrible name for MYSELF. People are insane.”
Nick has referenced drug use in a more carefree manner on his Twitter feed.
“I will (be) back on this (expletive) causing more mayhem tomorrow,” he posted last March. “Smoke your weed and be happy.”
Both Bobbi Kristina and Nick blasted critics who commented with alarm at her emaciated frame last year.
“Think I care?” she posted along with a one-finger salute.
For Holliday, it all points to a troubling pattern.
“Where are the guardians? Where was the help?” she demanded. “This is an unnecessary tragedy. We need to redefine what the word ‘love’ means in this day and age when people are destroying themselves.”
Bobbi Kristina’s family members “had to have known” that she was troubled, Holliday said.
“Someone needed to be angry and yelling, like I am right now,” she said. “Where are the grown people?”