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Alton Sterling Sent Off With an Emotional Public Wake

Tears flowed as a crowd of a few thousand assembled at Southern University to remember Alton Sterling, who was shot by police last week.

A poster of Alton Sterling is propped up ahead of his public viewing in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, July 15.

Jonathan Bachman / Reuters
The body of Alton Sterling lies in a casket as he is brought into his viewing at Southern University, a historically black college in north Baton Rouge. Sean Gardner / Getty Images
An inmate with the Louisiana Department of Corrections is consoled by friends and family. Jonathan Bachman / Reuters
A steady stream of mourners filed past the casket of Alton Sterling, the 37-year-old black man who was shot to death by two white police officers as he was pinned to the pavement outside a convenience store. The grieving paused Friday in front of Sterling's open casket, which was adorned with music notes and a smiling photo of the man. Sterling was selling CDs outside the store, as he had done for years, when he was killed by police responding to a call of a man threatening someone with a gun. Jonathan Bachman / Reuters
Sandra Sterling, aunt of Alton Sterling, cries for her nephew. Sean Gardner / Getty Images
Friends, family and the general public pay their respects. Sterling's occasion started with a gospel choir singing hymns, as many in the crowd of a couple thousand joined in. Gary Chambers, a spokesman for the Sterling family and master of ceremonies for the funeral, said at the beginning that the event was intended to be a celebration of Sterling's life -- not an opportunity for demonstrations about his death. Sean Gardner / Getty Images
A mourner cries as after her time on stage during the open-casket ceremony. Jonathan Bachman / Reuters
A crowd of a couple thousand people assembled Friday at Southern University. Joe Penney / Reuters
A mourner raises her hand in praise. Joe Penney / Reuters

Mourners dance as they attend the funeral.

 

Video: Mourners Make Alton Sterling’s Funeral a Celebration

 

Joe Penney / Reuters
The body of Alton Sterling, lies in a casket during his funeral. A burial took place later in the morning. The police shooting has lead the Department of Justice to open a civil rights investigation. JONATHAN BACHMAN / Reuters