As many as 2,500 mourners poured into the Washington National Cathedral on Wednesday to remember Ben Bradlee.

The legendary Washington Post editor, who oversaw the newspaper’s groundbreaking Watergate coverage, died last Tuesday at 93.


While the burial is private, the funeral service for Bradlee is open to the public and will be officiated by Washington National Cathedral Dean the Very Rev. Gary Hall. The ceremony will also be broadcast live on C-SPAN.

Vice President Biden, Secretary of State John Kerry and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) were among those in attendance.

Many high-profile Washingtonians were eyed among the guests at the funeral, including NBC's Andrea Mitchell, Tony Kornheiser, Washington Post CEO Fred Ryan, Thomas Friedman, Walter Pincus, Betsy Fischer and former Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.), CEO of the Motion Picture Association of America.

Among those delivering tributes at the journalist-packed service: former Post Chairman Donald Graham, Pincus, Carl Bernstein, Bob Woodward, Tom Brokaw, David Ignatius and Ben Bradlee Jr. and Quinn Bradlee.

"I loved this man. It was not mere admiration ... it was love," Woodward said. "He was a journalistic warrior — unequaled and probably never to be matched."

The mood wasn't all somber. Ignatius in particular recalled an exchange between Bradlee and a copy editor: "Is 'dickhead' one word or two?" he quoted Bradlee.

So many members if the press poured into the Cathedral that one security staffer had to ask attendants at the doors: "Are you press? Or, press covering this? Because practically everyone here is press."

Jim Lehrer, Norman Lear, Katharine Weymouth and lawyer Bob Barnett were just some of those serving as pall bearers.

— Last updated at 11:56 a.m.