Steve Jennings/WireImageHundreds of people turned out to a church in Indianola, Mississippi, on Saturday for the funeral of blues great B.B. King.
Five hundred people gathered inside the sanctuary of Bell Grove Missionary Baptist Church, located in King’s hometown, while 200 others watched a live broadcast of the funeral in the church’s fellowship hall, according to The Clarion-Ledger.
The Rev. Herron Wilson remarked, “Hands that once picked cotton would someday pick guitar strings on a national and international stage. Amazing.”
Letters from President Obama and former President Bill Clinton were read at the service. Obama noted in his letter, “The blues has lost its king and America has lost a legend.”
“No one worked harder than B.B. No one did more to spread the gospel of the blues…B.B. may be gone but that thrill will be with us forever. And there’s going to be one killer blues session in heaven tonight,” Obama added.
Close friends also spoke at the service. Stevie Wonder, calling from his home in Los Angeles, commented, “I love him and will always will. He will forever be King of the Blues, but not just that, he will be king of a wonderful spirit. I will always cherish him saying ‘Hey Stevie Wonderous.’ “
King died May 14 in Las Vegas. He was 89.
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