GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) - The city of Grand Rapids is preparing for the funeral of former first lady Betty Ford, set for Thursday.
Road closures will include:
- Scribner Avenue, Pearl Street to Bridge Street -- effective at 5 p.m. Wednesday. This area will remain closed through 6 p.m. Thursday.
- Pearl Street, Scribner Avenue to Campau Avenue -- will be restricted to one lane in each direction, effective at 7 a.m. Wednesday through 6 p.m.
The city encourages people to carpool downtown or use public transportation. No shuttles will be made available for mourners.
Mrs. Ford's body will be flown to Grand Rapids on Wednesday, arriving at the Gerald R. Ford International Airport at 5 p.m. A motorcade will leave the airport and travel:
- North along Patterson to 28th Street
- East on 28th Street to I-96
- I-96 West to I-196 (aka, The Gerald Ford Freeway)
- I-196 to Ottawa Avenue
- Ottawa Avenue west along Michigan
- Michigan to Scribner, south
- Scribner to Pearl, east
A public repose for Mrs. Ford will take place from 7 to 11 p.m. Wednesday and again from 7 to 10 a.m. Thursday. The public needs to enter through DeVos Place.
A memorial book will be available for the public to sign, also at DeVos Place during those times.
"There are restrictions in regards to recording devices and so forth," Ford Family spokesman Tim Pietryga said. "They are not allowed inside the museum, obviously, there will be a process as you go through DeVos Place that they'll look for those types of things."
The funeral service is set for 2 p.m. Thursday at Grace Episcopal Church in Grand Rapids. Lynne Cheney, the wife of former Vice President Dick Cheney, and Richard Norton Smith, will deliver the eulogies.
The funeral service -- located in the main sanctuary -- will be for invited guests only, due to limited capacity. The public may view the National Tribute motorcades on at 5:15 p.m. Wednesday and 1:15 p.m. Thursday.
The interment service is private.
"We look forward to welcoming Betty home tomorrow," Pietryga said. "The strength she has shown throughout the years and outspokenness is admired by many, and we look forward to a very favorable homecoming tomorrow."
You can watch the funeral of Betty Ford live on WOOD TV8 and on woodtv.com
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