The death of B.B. King shook the world, literally. In losing such a magnitude of talent perhaps it is no coincidence that Las Vegas had its first major earthquake in several years, which in itself is a very rare and strange occurrence. This just goes to show how much B.B. King rocked the world and made an impact on the face of this Earth. The aftershock of his death will affect fans for years to come, but he is memorialized forever in the hearts and ears of many and has now joined some of the greatest musicians who have ever lived, and died, for a reunion concert in the sky.
One of B.B. 's last appearances in Las Vegas was hosted by business man, philanthropist, public figure and publisher Ronald Q. Quilang who's printing company 360 DPI printed all of King's fliers, memorial buttons and created a photo banner for daughter Rita King-Washington as a personal keepsake free of charge. The memorial viewing was open to the public and held at Palm Mortuary on Jones Blvd, Friday, May 22, 2015 from 3 p.m.- 7 p.m. Guests entered through the south doors of the building and were greeted by pleasant and poised location manager Matt Phillips and funeral director Joel who handed out memorial prayer cards with the singer's photo, name and life dates on the front and the lyrics to his timeless song "The Thrill is Gone" on the back. Visitors were directed to the front of the chapel where Mr. King who was protected by velvet ropes, a personal body guard and Palm Mortuary staff, laid peacefully in a dark, half-couch Batesville casket with a personalized casket insert with an embroidered black and gold guitar and the title of one of his greatest songs "Lucille". Two shiny black Gibson guitars were placed affront of the casket, one at the head and the other at the feet, while a multitude of flower arrangements provided by Flower Fair florists accented Mr. King's tribute.
The lobby displayed a large memorial blanket, one of the "family support option" items provided as part of Palm's funeral packages. The large blanket was embedded with a photo of the Blue's King playing his guitar and a large floral piece with a backdrop of white roses sprayed black and the name "Lucille" spelled out in large white roses. Among the attendants were Jenna G, Palm care center and mortuary staff member, and care center manager Mike Finke who stated that within the first hour close to 700 people had come to pay respects to the legend and the line was wrapped around the building. +Las Vegas Metropolitan Police officers were stationed at each entrance of the mortuary parking lot and estimated that they were expecting over 1,000 visitors that afternoon.
In addition to B.B. King's daughter, Rita King-Washington; special guests included Denise White, daughter of the late, great; velvet-voiced singer Barry White and Jerome Jackson of the Jackson 5. Rita thanked Ron Quilang for his contribution to the service and Ron responded "It was an honor, I was one of your dad's biggest fans". Rita replied to Ron, "I am one of your biggest fans". Several news stations were present to cover the public event but only Fox 5 News got the exclusive of the behind the scenes story of these named guests and Ron Quilang's intimate involvement in B.B. King's homage.
American Hall of Fame blues singer, songwriter and guitarist, B.B. King, born September 16, 1925 Riley B. King; rocked the world until May 14, 2015. Throughout his life, King was named the 6 th greatest guitarist on Rolling Stone's list of the "100 greatest guitarists of all time"; number 17 on Gibson's "Top 50 Guitarists of All Time" and inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987. His influential style and effortless talent earned him the title of the "King of the Blues" and one of the "Three King of the Blues Guitar". B.B. King continued to perform in over 200 concerts per year well into his 70's until he was stricken with high blood pressure and diabetes and finally passed to the Heavenly Hall of Fame following several small strokes related to his illness.