U.S. Senator Ted Kennedy has been laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery near Washington, D.C., late Saturday near his slain brothers, President John F. Kennedy and Senator Robert Kennedy. Earlier in the day, President Barack Obama delivered a eulogy for his mentor and friend, praising Kennedy for both his public accomplishments and for his private kindness towards his family, friends and people he met.
The motorcade carrying Senator Kennedy's casket arrived at his final destination, Arlington National Cemetery, for a private burial service, after several days of public tributes and ceremonies. Edward "Teddy" Kennedy was laid to rest near the graves of his two slain brothers, President John F. Kennedy and Senator Robert Kennedy.
Earlier in the day, some 1,500 people attended Kennedy's funeral mass at "Our Lady of Perpetual Help Basilica", an inner-city church in Boston, Massachusetts.
As the patriarch of America's most famous political family, Kennedy's funeral drew many of Washington's elite, including three former presidents and their spouses.
The music was also of the highest caliber, including tenor Placido Domingo and cellist Yo-Yo Ma.
President Obama pointed out that being born a Kennedy carried tremendous expectations, but he said Edward Kennedy surpassed them because of the person he became.
"Today we say goodbye to the youngest child of Rose and Joseph Kennedy," Mr. Obama said. "The world will long remember their son Edward as the heir to a weighty legacy; a champion for those who had none; the soul of the Democratic Party; and the lion of the U.S. Senate - a man who [whose name] graces nearly 1,000 laws, and who penned more than 300 himself."
Edward Kennedy died of brain cancer Tuesday at the age of 77. He was a tireless champion of universal health care for all Americans, civil rights, and increasing the minimum wage for workers during his 47 years in the Senate.
His liberal positions often caused him to clash with conservative lawmakers, but he was also known for his willingness to compromise to get laws passed. Fellow Democrats and Republicans have united this week to pay tribute to the effective lawmaker.
Perhaps the most moving tributes at the funeral came from Senator Kennedy's two sons. Ted Kennedy Jr. recalled an incident shortly after he lost his leg to cancer when he 12 years old, when his father helped him climb up an icy, snow-covered hill.
"And he lifted me up in his strong, gentle arms, and said something I will never forget," Ted Kennedy Jr. said. "He said 'I know you can do it. There is nothing that you can't do.'"
After the funeral, Senator Kennedy's body was flown to Andrews Air Force Base near Washington, and his motorcade drove his casket to the U.S. Capitol, for a final farewell from U.S. lawmakers, staffers and hundreds of citizens who lined the streets.
Edward Kennedy's burial alongside his brothers at Arlington National Cemetary was the closing of a long, full life, heading a family marked by tragedy and triumphs.