WATCH: Nancy Reagan begins final journey to husband’s side; public viewings underway

Former first lady Nancy Reagan speaks in the Capitol Rotunda in Washington, Wednesday, June 3, 2009, during a ceremony to unveil a statue of President Ronald Reagan. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

SIMI VALLEY, Calif. (AP) – More than 3,000 people visited the casket of Nancy Reagan at the first day of a public viewing, and many more are expected on the second day.

Visitors from toddlers to the very elderly were taken to the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California on Wednesday in shuttle buses where they paid their respects to the former first lady.

On Thursday, the process will start over again for a second day of public viewings from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.

That will lead up to Friday’s invitation-only funeral.

Many drove 100 miles or more to visit the casket of Nancy Reagan on Wednesday.

Some including Bobbie Eldridge of Bakersfield and Mary Ellen Gruendyke of Riverside cited their love of President Reagan and their admiration of the love and support Nancy Reagan provided for him before and after his time in office.

Program for Nancy Reagan’s funeral in Southern California

Nancy Reagan will be buried at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California, next to her husband, who died on June 5, 2004. The funeral will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, with a musical prelude to begin at 10:15 a.m. by the Santa Susana High School Advanced Women’s Choir and Abbe Road A Cappella and an instrumental prelude by the 1st Marine Division Band, Marine Corps Camp Pendleton.

The Rev. Stuart A. Kenworthy, Vicar, Washington National Cathedral, will preside over the funeral.

The program includes:

  • Battle Hymn of the Republic, sung by the Santa Susana High School Choir
  • Reading of Proverbs 31:10-31 by Anne Peterson, Nancy Reagan’s niece
  • Letter from Ronald Reagan to Nancy Reagan, read by Brian Mulroney
  • Ave Maria, sung by Opera singer Ana Marie Martinez
  • Reading of 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, read by Barton Hegeler, Nancy Reagan’s nephew
  • Gospel Reading of John 14:1-6 by Diane Sawyer
  • Pie Jesu-Requiem, sung by Martinez
  • Reflections by James A. Baker
  • Reflections by Tom Brokaw
  • Reflections by Patti Davis
  • Reflections by Ronald Prescott Reagan
  • Amazing Grace, sung by the Santa Susana High School Choir
  • Recessional with bagpipe played by Piper Major Bill Boetticher
  • God Bless America

(Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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