Obama to speak at John Lewis's funeral

Former President Obama will speak at the late Rep. John LewisJohn LewisProgressives put Democrats on defense Democrats face mounting hurdles to agenda Democrats see opportunity as states push new voting rules MORE’s (D-Ga.) funeral Thursday, according to a source familiar with the plans.

Obama will attend the service alongside former Presidents George W. Bush and Bill ClintonWilliam (Bill) Jefferson ClintonDemocratic Rep. Mondaire Jones calls on Breyer to retire Modern biomedical breakthroughs require a federal ethics commission Biden must compel China and Russia to act on climate MORE, according to multiple reports. The funeral for the civil rights icon and longtime Georgia lawmaker will be held at 11 a.m. at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta.

Lewis died earlier this month at the age of 80. He announced late last year that he was diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer. 


“I first met John when I was in law school, and I told him then that he was one of my heroes. Years later, when I was elected a U.S. Senator, I told him that I stood on his shoulders,” the former president said in a statement after Lewis’s death.

"When I was elected President of the United States, I hugged him on the inauguration stand before I was sworn in and told him I was only there because of the sacrifices he made,” Obama wrote on Medium. 

"And through all those years, he never stopped providing wisdom and encouragement to me and Michelle and our family. We will miss him dearly,” he continued.

Lewis was one of the original Freedom Riders and the youngest speaker at the March on Washington in 1963. He was the only person who delivered remarks at the historic civil rights march to witness Obama become the nation’s first Black president. 

Lewis was beaten by a Georgia state trooper and his skull was fractured during the march across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in 1965 that became known as "Bloody Sunday."

On Sunday, Lewis’s body was escorted across the bridge in Alabama for the last time in tribute, alongside a military honor guard.

Lewis this week was the first Black lawmaker in U.S. history to lie in state in the Capitol Rotunda in Washington, D.C.