Rodney King was remembered in Los Angeles on Saturday as a forgiving man who bore the scars of his infamous beating with dignity.
The Rev. Al Sharpton, who delivered the eulogy at Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills, said before the funeral that King never showed bitterness to the officers who beat him.
"People should not be judged by the mistakes that they make, but by how they rise above them," Sharpton said outside the Hall of Freedom at the sprawling cemetery grounds. "Rodney had risen above his mistakes. He never mocked anyone — not the police, not the justice system, not anyone."
"He became a symbol of forgiveness," Sharpton said.
The funeral came nearly two weeks after King was found dead at the bottom of the swimming pool at his Rialto, Calif. home on June 17. He was 47.
Family members held a private service early in the day, followed by a public memorial and burial. Mourners signed a guest book and surveyed newspaper clippings from the days when King dominated headlines in 1991 and 1992. A large photograph of a smiling King was set on an easel.
Daughter Laura Dene King, 28, said she was proud to have had her father in her life for as long as she did, especially considering she almost lost him when she was six years old.
"I will remember his smile, his unconditional love," she said.
Several donors helped pay for the funeral, the reception afterwards, and other arrangements. Television producer Anthony Zuiker donated $10,000, and said he was at the funeral to show support for King's family.
"We lost a symbol, but they lost a loved one," said Zuiker, creator of the CSI: series.
Lawrence Spagnola, who co-authored King's 2012 book "The Riot Within: My Journey from Rebellion to Redemption," sat with family members at both services.
The family can be proud of the "amazing degree of grace and wisdom" with which King carried himself after being violently thrust into the media spotlight, Spagnola said.
King's death is being treated as an accidental drowning but authorities are awaiting autopsy results to determine the official cause of death.
He became famous after his beating by Los Angeles police in 1991 was captured on videotape and broadcast worldwide, as were photos of his bloodied and bruised face.
The images of the grainy video became a national symbol of police brutality. It was played over and over for the following year, inflaming racial tensions across the country.
More than a year later, four officers charged with felony assault in the beating were acquitted by a jury with no black members. The verdict sparked one of the most costly and deadly race riots in U.S. history.
During the unrest, which left more than 50 people dead and caused more than $1 billion in property damage, King famously pleaded for peace by asking, "Can we all get along?"
His famous words were embroidered on the lid of King's casket, next to a portrait of him.
"He never asked if people would remember Rodney King. But he wondered if they would remember those words," Spagnola said. "I told him, 'long after you're gone, your words are going to live.' And I think he took some solace in that."
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
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2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
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3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
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4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
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5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
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7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
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9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
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10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
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11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
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12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
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13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
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14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
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15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
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16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
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17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
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18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
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19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
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20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
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21. Bae #retailtherapy
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22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
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23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
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24. Diggy Simmons
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25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
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26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
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27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
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28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
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29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
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30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
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31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
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