SALT LAKE CITY — Family members and numerous dignitaries honored the life and career of the late Sen. Orrin Hatch during a funeral service Friday. Afterwards, as a solemn crowd looked on, Hatch's casket was draped with an American flag followed by a 21-gun salute.
The senator, who served under six presidents and sponsored hundreds of bills that were signed into law, died on April 23 at the age of 88.
Watch the full funeral service for Sen. Orrin Hatch in the video below
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints President Dallin H. Oaks presided over the service which was held at the Institute of Religion on the campus of the University of Utah.
“What happened to Orrin Hatch after our first meeting 50 years ago is well known and already reviewed,” said President Oaks. “I add only our longtime friendship and frequent contacts and work on subjects of common and public interest. Now, born two years apart and tracing our ancestry through the same small Utah town, Orrin and I come together for what I like to refer to as Orrin G. Hatch’s graduation from mortality, with highest honors.”
Hatch's daughter, Marcia Hatch Whetton, U.S. Sen. Gordon Smith, and Zion's Bank CEO A. Scott Anderson were among the speakers at the service, along with musical performances by Hatch's grandchildren and the University of Utah Institute Singers. Both songs performed during the service were written by Hatch who was a prolific songwriter.
"He loved his family so very much, and he let us know that on a regular basis," remarked Whetton.
Video below shows the 21-gun salute and the playing of Taps in honor of Sen. Hatch
Anderson, who is also the chair of the Hatch Foundation, spoke about the man the senator was outside the halls of the U.S. Capitol.
“Today we mourn the passing of a great American and a great Senator,” said Anderson. “But he was more than that. He was a bridge-builder, a collaborator, a sports enthusiast, a songwriter, a man of God, and a cherished friend. We will miss his physical presence, but his spirit lives on and his legacy will continue to impact people through the Orrin G. Hatch Foundation. We love you, Senator Hatch.”
Utah Gov. Spencer Cox and Lt. Gov. Deidre Henderson, along with Sen. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell were among those who attended the service of the man who represented the state as senator from 1977-2018.
"It’s a sad day for the state of utah, but also a day to celebrate the life of one of Utah’s most prominent public servants," said Cox.
His casket was then driven north to Cache County, where he was buried at the Newton Cemetery.
Watch the graveside service below: