Throughout her illustrious career, Houston was nominated for 32 Image Awards and the recipient of 16. On the red carpet, her peers remembered the beautiful singer with the one-of-a-kind voice as part of the sound track of their lives.
"Everyone here kinda grew up with Whitney, she's touched every one of our lives so it's sad," said actress Sandra Oh.
A funeral service for Houston will be held Saturday morning in her native New Jersey in the very church she grew up singing gospel music.
Actress and long time friend Cicely Tyson will be attending the invite-only funeral.
"I'm sorry that it has to happen, I'm sorry that the tribute is for the reason that it is, I wish it weren't," Tyson said.
Houston was poised to make a comeback to the big screen this summer in the movie "Sparkle." Some say Houston never got enough recognition for her acting ability.
"She didn't do a lot of acting, but I thought the things that she did do, she brought dignity to them, I thought she brought some realism," said actor James Pickens, Jr.
While Friday's award ceremony paid tribute to the singing legend, there are those thinking about Whitney the person, and the loved ones she left behind.
"My heart aches for her and her family and of course being a mother of four and seeing what her young daughter has to go through, it's tragic," said actress Vanessa Williams.
Houston will be buried beside her father in Westfield, N.J., not far from where she grew up.