Young, Florida's longest-serving member of Congress and the longest-serving current member of the U.S. House of Representatives, died in Washington last week. He was 82.
Beverly Young, his widow, emailed Crist, the former Republican governor and likely future Democratic nominee for the position, instructing him to stay away from the memorial service Thursday at the First Baptist Indian Rocks Church in Largo, Fla., the Tampa Bay Times reported Tuesday.
The email to Crist read, in part, "I have watched over the years, as Bill had, your transparent attempts to manipulate the political arena. ... I will not tolerate anyone turning this into a platform for political gain."
Officials expect a congregation of about 6,000 for the service at the church.