Memphis Bids Hayes Soulful So-Long

Family, friends, stars and fans gather to honor Isaac Hayes' life
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 19, 2008 6:22 AM CDT
Entertainers James Alexander, left, and Bootsy Collins pose for a photo as Collins arrives for the "Tribute to Isaac Hayes" service at Hope Presbyterian Church yesterday.   (AP Photo/Bill Waugh)
camera-icon View 4 more images

(Newser) – Thousands gathered at a Memphis-area mega-church to say a final farewell to Isaac Hayes, the Memphis Commercial Appeal reports. Family members mixed with musicians from across the genres, as well as Hollywood stars, politicians, Scientologists, African royalty, and thousands of ordinary people paying tribute to the soul legend who died earlier this month of a stroke.

The celebration of Hayes' life followed a small private ceremony. Speaker after speaker praised Hayes' contribution to music and to the community as songs and video clips played.  "What would you say if you were flying into Memphis and they said you are about to land at Isaac Hayes International Airport?" asked Rep. Steve Cohen, drawing huge cheers.