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Mourners cry, laugh for Rehnquist

Sept. 8, 2005 at 7:01 AM   |   Comments

WASHINGTON, Sept. 8 (UPI) -- More than 1,000 mourners shared tears and laughter at the funeral service for the late U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice William Rehnquist.

President George Bush and hundreds of political and judicial officials, family and friends attended the service at Washington's St. Matthews Cathedral Wednesday afternoon before Rehnquist was buried in a private ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery.

He died Saturday of thyroid cancer just shy of his 81st birthday.

The New York Times said several times Rehnquist's love of singing was mentioned by those who gave eulogies, including a comment from Bush, who drew laughter when he said, "Having stood next to him during the national anthem, I can tell you the man loved to sing."

The Rev. George W. Evans Jr., pastor of Rehnquist's home parish, the Lutheran Church of the Redeemer in McLean, Va., said the chief justice was a man who lived his faith, and had first begun to realize something was wrong with his throat when he could not sing Sunday morning hymns with his usual range.

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