Bernie Mac Funeral (Photos)

bernie mac 4

Actor and comedian Bernie Mac was laid to rest today. A public funeral was held at Chicago's House of Hope Church where family members, friends and thousands of fans gathered to say goodbye to a good man.

Mac told The New York Times in 2001:

"The success of my comedy has been not being afraid to touch on subject matter or issues that everyone else is politically scared of--it's a joke believe me. I'm not trying to hurt anybody."

The day was somber and many celebrities paid their respects to Bernie. Actor Chris Rock, Rev. Jesse Jackson and Samuel L. Jackson were a few of the stars to give emotional tributes at the funeral.

Mac, 50, died a week ago of complications related to pneumonia. Several prominent celebrities sent letters of condolence, including Oprah Winfrey, Senator Barack Obama and Andy Garcia. Actor and stand-up comedian D.L. Hughley joked about Mac's well known taste in clothes. He said, "Bernie would wear colors that Crayola hadn't even invented."

The church seated 10,000 and many fans waited for hours, some overnight trying to get a seat. Chicago mayor Richard Daley praised Bernie's efforts to make the streets safe for the cities kids. He said, "Bernie wanted to do something personally to get children away from the life of violence. He had a heart and passion....that's why as the king of comedy, he never lost his soul in Chicago."

More Photos Below - including four from memorial service.

bernie macs wife rhonda stands before his portrait at memorial s

  • actor tony cox prior to the start of bernie macs memorial servic
  • rhonda mccullough second from right wife of bernie mac at memori
  • there was singing during the celebration service for bernie mac

  • bernie mac 1
  • bernie mac 2
  • bernie mac 3
  • bernie mac memorial

  • bernie mac oceans cast
  • bernie mac and george clooney
  • mac hayes and jackson
  • the bernie mac show co stars
  • bernie mac and wife rhona in 2004

Photos: WENN