Wednesday, 17 July, 2019

Graham's body to make journey from mountains to Charlotte

Hearse for Rev. Billy Graham arrives at The Cove Hearse for Rev. Billy Graham arrives at The Cove
Patty Aguilar | 25 February, 2018, 05:03

World-renowned evangelist Rev. Billy Graham's body is being brought to his hometown of Charlotte, North Carolina, as part of a procession drawing crowds of well-wishers.

He will lie in repose Monday and Tuesday in Charlotte. Among the faces in the crowd was Leighton Ford, Graham's brother-in-law. "God picked through Jesus some very ordinary people to carry his word, and he still does that". On Wednesday, he'll be moved to the U.S. Capitol where he'll be the first private citizen since Rosa Parks to lie in honor in the Rotunda.

The Billy Graham Evangelical Association announced Graham's funeral service will take place at noon on March 2. Fire trucks parked on overpasses along Interstate 40. "It's come with the territory", said Joe Tyson, a family friend who runs a furniture store in Black Mountain, where he watched the procession.

Graham, known to many as America's pastor, died aged 99 on Wednesday from natural causes at his family home in Montreat just outside Asheville. In Black Mountain, a group sang "Amazing Grace".

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More: Billy Graham reached millions through his crusades. "Not in my lifetime".

A private funeral for Graham will be held on Friday, March 2 in a tent at the library site and he will be buried next to his wife there, DeMoss said.

His coffin was built by inmates at the Louisiana State Penitentiary in Angola, Louisiana, who typically construct caskets for fellow prisoners who can not afford one. Invitations to the funeral will be extended to President Donald Trump and former presidents, DeMoss said.

This story has been edited to correct the quote from Ford.

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