Amy Winehouse's Family Feels a 'Gaping Hole in Our Lives'

07/24/2011 at 12:35 PM EDT

Russell Brand, Amy Winehouse's Family Speak Out
Amy Winehouse, flanked by her parents, Mitch and Janis
Gareth Davies/Mission Pictures/Getty
The family of Amy Winehouse "has been left bereft" by her death on Saturday.

The Winehouses, including mother Janis, her father Mitch and her brother Alex, released a statement Sunday.

"Our family has been left bereft by the loss of Amy, a wonderful daughter, sister, niece. She leaves a gaping hole in our lives," the statement reads. "We are coming together to remember her and we would appreciate some privacy and space at this terrible time."

The body of the influential "Rehab" singer, who struggled for years with addiction, was found at her London home on Saturday. The death is still officially "unexplained," according to London police. An examination of the body to determine the cause of death isn't scheduled until Monday at the earliest, according to reports.





As news of the Winehouse's death spread, celebrities (many who knew her) posted their thoughts on Twitter:

Rihanna: "Dear God have mercy!!! I am SICK about this right now!" the singer wrote, later adding, "I am genuinely heartbroken by this ... #DearAmy U made a MAJAH impression on this industry and throughout the world, in such a short space of time...too short! ICONSneverDIE"

Kelly Osbourne: "i cant even breath right my now im crying so hard i just lost 1 of my best friends. i love you forever Amy & will never forget the real you!"

Katy Perry: "RIP Amy Winehouse. May she finally find peace."

Leann Rimes: "RIP Amy Winehouse. So sad to see such a talent gone and her life end in tragedy. This makes me terribly sad."

Josh Groban: "Drugs took her gift, her soul, her light, long before they took her life. RIP Amy"

Ricky Martin: "I just found out. I feel pain. I feel anger. Rest beautiful girl rest. You are free!"

And Russell Brand, who knew Winehouse in London before they were both famous, wrote a post on his Web site, entitled "For Amy."



Describing her when they first met as "just some twit in a pink satin jacket," he writes about hearing her sing for the first time, calling her a "genius."

"Entering the space I saw Amy on stage with [Paul] Weller and his band; and then the awe. The awe that envelops when witnessing a genius," he writes. "From her oddly dainty presence that voice, a voice that seemed not to come from her but from somewhere beyond even Billie and Ella, from the font of all greatness. A voice that was filled with such power and pain that it was at once entirely human yet laced with the divine. My ears, my mouth, my heart and mind all instantly opened."



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