- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 24, 2001

Celebrities of politics, business and journalism joined the thousands of mourners who overflowed Washington National Cathedral yesterday to pay tribute to former Washington Post publisher Katharine Graham.
Former President Bill Clinton and Vice President Richard B. Cheney shared a pew at the funeral, which drew more than 3,000. Journalist Diane Sawyer, designer Oscar de la Renta and Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates served as ushers.
Retired Missouri Sen. John Danforth, an Episcopal priest, led the ceremony and media tycoon Barry Diller was among those who led the casket into the cathedral.
Cellist Yo-Yo Ma performed a selection from Bach's "Sixth Cello Suite."
Hundreds of employees of The Post arrived by bus, as did many U.S. congressmen.
"She would have loved this funeral," said Mrs. Graham's daughter, Elizabeth "Lally" Weymouth.
Mrs. Graham, who turned the Post into one of the most powerful American newspapers as publisher from 1963 to 1991, died last Tuesday at age 84.
The widowed mother of four had sustained head injuries days earlier when she fell on a walkway while attending a conference of business executives in Sun Valley, Idaho.
Yesterday, former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, historian Arthur Schlesinger Jr. and former Post Executive Editor Ben Bradlee joined members of the Graham family in sharing remembrances of someone who opened doors in a man's world and left her mark on Washington.
"The Washington Post was a relentless critic of many aspects of the administrations in which I served," Mr. Kissinger said as he overlooked the casket draped in white.
"Yet this seeming paradox was overwhelmed by the admiration and affection I came to feel for Kay as a person."
He went on to describe the time Mrs. Graham took him to a movie during the height of the Vietnam War.
"The movie audience was surely startled when the lights went up and they saw us sitting together."
Under Mrs. Graham, the Post scored one of the greatest scoops in American newspaper history when its reporters exposed the involvement of members of the Nixon administration in the July 1972 burglary of Democratic National Committee offices in the Watergate Hotel.
"Deep Throat," the unidentified government source key to the Watergate saga, "may very well be here among us this morning," Mr. Schlesinger said to laughter.
Mr. Bradlee recalled his old boss as a woman who loved fancy parties and fancy guests. She had a love for news and always wanted a "piece of the action."
He entertained the crowd with his personal anecdotes, such as the time Mrs. Graham ran from the shower to take a call from President Reagan.
"Kay comes flying out the shower, soaking wet, grabs a towel and starts looking for a pencil and some paper. The paper gets soggy. The pencil punches the paper. But finally, she's ready: Brenda Starr, girl reporter, is at the scene and ready to go."
Following the service, the casket was carried out to the sounds of "America the Beautiful."
"It was a beautiful ceremony," said Sen. Orrin G. Hatch, Utah Republican, as he left the cathedral. "It was serious, it was intellectually profound. It was filled with pathos, filled with humor."
Former Washington Mayor Marion Barry said: "Who shows up [at a funeral] is indicative of the kind of life you've lived. Look at the diversity of the people here."
The Post, he noted, endorsed him for mayor when he first ran in 1978.
"We admired [Mrs. Graham]. She had guts. She was a very decent, good woman," said journalist and friend Barbara Walters, surrounded by a throng of camera crews outside the Cathedral.
Mrs. Graham was buried in a private ceremony at Oak Hill Cemetery on R Street NW next to her late husband, Philip, who preceeded her as publisher..

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