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Mourners Prepare to Bid Kennedy a Final Farewell

Kwame Holman reports on the scene in Boston, where mourners braved long lines to bid a final farewell to Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass.

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  • KWAME HOLMAN:

    By this evening, tens of thousands had filed past the flag-draped casket of Senator Edward Kennedy at the John Fitzgerald Kennedy Presidential Library in Boston. Many stopped to pray. Some offered a salute. Others simply paused. Hundreds were waiting when the library's doors opened this morning.

  • MAN:

    Oh, we got here around 10 minutes to 5:00.

  • KWAME HOLMAN:

    Some of the mourners talked about personal connections to the senator.

  • LISA PUCCIA:

    He was a — a great man. He did a lot of great things for a lot of great people, especially my family.

  • MAN:

    What did he do for your family?

  • LISA PUCCIA:

    My daughter is autistic. And — oh, God. And he helped us out with certain issues. And — and he is a great man.

  • BARBARA COCHRAN:

    Oh, my God. It's just like — like I lost my father. I think the world of him. I worked for him when I was in high school and got the opportunity to march in parades with him.

  • KWAME HOLMAN:

    Edward Kennedy's widow, Vicki, and his last living sibling, Jean Kennedy Smith, greeted many visitors, among them, celebrities, dignitaries, and local and national politicians.

    Some who streamed in brought signs. Some read, "Thank you, Teddy."

    Library officials kept the doors open an extra three hours, until 2:00 this morning, to accommodate those in line last night. Condolence books were filled with tributes.

  • MAN:

    I basically just said I admire his heart and his courage.

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