(MOBILE, Ala.) - Former Bishop State President and Alabama Legislator Yvonne Kennedy was laid to rest Saturday.
Thousands of people attended funeral services in Downtown Mobile at the Arthur R. Outlaw Convention Center, including leaders of state and local governments and organizations, as well as Former U.S. Secretary of Labor Alexis Herman.
"I do not say to Yvonne today, 'Rest in peace, my sister," Herman said, "because, you see, 'rest' was not a word in her very eloquent vocabulary."
Kennedy was escorted to her final resting place by family and close friends to the sounds of the Excelsior Brass Band playing "When the Saints Go Marching In."
Mobile Mayor Sam Jones spoke about the many hats Dr. Kennedy wore in her lifetime, and how so many knew of the work she did.
"Often, when I travel nationally, someone introduces me as the mayor of Mobile," Jones said, "and somebody says, 'That's Dr. Kennedy's city,' and I'm always proud to hear that because she has proceeded us and she has let everyone know that I am from Mobile, Alabama."
Governor Robert Bentley said he and his friend, Dr. Kennedy, talked every day while they served in the statehouse together.
"I always referred to her as Dr. Kennedy, and she always referred to me as Dr. Bentley," Bentley said. "This was not because we wanted to be formal, but it was because of our mutual respect one for another."
Mayor Sam Jones said it is a respect that she's earned in the Port City too.
"You can't travel Dr. Martin Luther King Avenue, and not know Dr. Kennedy had some impact on that," Jones said. "I believe the masses already say, 'Well done."
A life devoted to the service, education and molding of the communities she represented, Alexis Herman said she will also remember Kennedy as "The Dean of the Queens of Mardi Gras."
"Maybe now you can get the angels to reroute their march down Martin Luther King Drive," Herman said.
Kennedy's funeral was the first one ever held at the Arthur R. Outlaw Convention Center.