A service for the former New York City mayor was held in the city he once governed, and hundreds lined the streets for hours to say goodbye to a man who saved the city from financial ruin, while Bill Clinton delivered a moving speech.
After his sad death at 88 years old on Feb. 1, former Mayor Edward Irving “Ed” Koch is set to be buried in New York City on Feb. 4, following his funeral at the Temple Emanu-El in Manhattan. Ed, who spent his life building up the city, will be buried at the Trinity Church Cemetary, as he said he never wanted to leave Manhattan — even in death. Dignitaries such as Michael Bloomberg, Ido Aharoni and former president Bill Clinton spoke at the funeral.
Ed Koch’s Funeral Details
Ed’s funeral paid tribute to him, as New York Police Department helicopters were planned to fly over the synagogue in his honor, while many people spoke kind words about him.
Ed’s niece and nephew took to the podium to discuss their uncle, and his nephew Shmuel said he was “forever grateful to have him in his life.”
Former President of the United States Bill gave a long speech about Ed, where he discussed the many achievements of his career, including the work Ed did regarding Israel and gay rights. Bill said “we miss you so much” to his friend, and his speech got rousing applause from the audience.
Five years ago, Ed paid $20,000 for a burial plot at Trinity Church Cemetery, because it was the only graveyard in Manhattan that still had space. “I don’t want to leave Manhattan, even when I’m gone,” Ed explained to the Associated Press. “This is my home. The thought of having to go to New Jersey was so distressing to me.”
U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney also announced the renaming of a Manhattan subway station in Ed’s honor, and the station at East 77th and Lexington Avenue will now be called “Mayor Ed Koch subway station,” reports USA Today.
Barack Obama & Michael Bloomberg Speak About Ed’s Passing
Both President Obama and Mayor Bloomberg spoke about what a wonderful man Ed was.
“Through his tough, determined leadership and responsible fiscal stewardship, Ed helped lift the city out of its darkest days and set it on course for an incredible comeback,” Mayor Bloomberg said in a statement. He called Ed “an irrepressible icon, our most charismatic cheerleader and champion.”
“Ed Koch was an extraordinary Mayor, irrepressible character, and quintessential New Yorker,” said President Barack Obama, who was unable to attend the funeral. “He took office at a time when New York was in fiscal crisis, and helped his city achieve economic renewal, expand affordable housing, and extend opportunity to more of its people. In public office and beyond, his energy, force of personality, and commitment to causes ranging from civic issues to the security of the state of Israel always informed and enlivened the public discourse. Michelle and I send our thoughts and prayers to Ed’s loved ones, and to the city that survives him.”
Ed leaves behind an impressive legacy, and New York will be sad to see him go.
What do YOU think HollywoodLifers? Are you sad to see that Ed has died?
— Eleanore Hutch
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