Billy Graham died on Wednesday, February 21 at the age of 99 at his home in North Carolina. He had been in fairly good health until four years ago. He did not suffer in the end. He died peacefully in his sleep. The family spokesman Mark DeMoss is handling the Funeral arrangements for the well-known evangelist even though the deceased had planned every detail of his own funeral over a decade ago.

About Graham's funeral

Graham's body will be taken Saturday from Asheville to Charlotte, North Carolina to the Billy Graham Library where the funeral will take place at noon on Friday, March 2.

DeMoss said Graham's funeral will be private and by invitation only. About 2,300 invitations have been sent out. They were extended to President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence, and the former living presidents.

Even though he was a pastor to millions, Rev. Graham had his own pastor, Dr. Don Wilton, senior pastor at First Baptist in Spartanburg. He will be one of the pastors presiding over the funeral, but Billy Graham's son, Franklin, will give the eulogy. All of Graham's other children will speak. The musicians and other speakers will have had some connection to the evangelist's life and ministry.

Graham became popular in his early ministry by having tent revivals. The 1949 Los Angeles tent revival is the one that gave him worldwide fame.

Therefore, it is a fitting tribute that his funeral is being held in a tent on the grounds of Graham's Charlotte library.

Billy Graham's body will lie in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda on Wednesday, February 28 and Thursday, March 1. Speaker Paul Ryan has invited members of Congress as well as the public to pay respects to Graham.

It is not usual for a private citizen to lie in honor at the Capitol, but it is appropriate because Graham was a friend to dozens of United States Presidents during his lifetime. This is the first time for someone to lie in honor since the body of civil rights advocate Rosa Parks was there in 2005.

Burial and final resting place

Graham will be buried in a prison handmade plywood coffin. It is lined with a mattress pad with a cross inside. It cost only $200 for the inmates to make it at the Louisiana State Penitentiary in Angola in 2006. Rev. Franklin Graham requested that the inmates make the simple caskets for his parents. Billy Graham will be buried on the library grounds next to his wife, Ruth, who died in 2007 and was buried in an identical coffin.

The Rev. Franklin Graham says his father wanted to be remembered as a preacher. Graham's children agreed that their father wanted only one word on his tombstone: "Preacher."