Nelson Mandela

AP Photo/Denis Farrell

Nelson Mandela has been laid to rest.

The former South African president was buried in his childhood village of Qunu, according to CNN, with cannons firing a 21-gun salute over the quiet village.

"Yours was truly a long walk to freedom, an officiator said at the grave site. "Now you have achieved the ultimate freedom in the bosom of God, your maker."

A South African flag that was placed over Mandela's coffin was given to the late icon's family before his casket was lowered into the ground, the network reported.

Nelson Mandela

Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Earlier Sunday, about 4,500 people, including Mandela's family and friends, attended his funeral where his coffin was placed atop black and white cattle skins in front of 95 candles—symbolizing 95 years of his life.

The service was held in a tent at the family's compound, where South African president Jacob Zuma said, "Today marks the end of an extraordinary journey that began 95 years ago. It is the end of 95 glorious years of a freedom fighter...a beacon of hope to all those fighting for a just and equitable world order."

Prior to his funeral, tens of thousands of people headed to Johannesburg's FNB Stadium Dec. 10 to celebrate Mandela's life at a memorial service.

Nelson Mandela, Charlize Theron

Naashon Zalk/Getty Images

President Barack Obama, Charlize Theron, Bono and Naomi Campbell were among the celebrities, world leaders and activists in attendance at the event.

The legendary South African statesman is survived by his wife, Graça Machel, as well as a number of children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

  • Share
  • Tweet
  • Share