Of mourners gathered to pay their respects to the late brazilian football legend, pele, who was regarded as the world’s best football player. a seven kilometer procession accompanied pele’s coffin, which was carried on a fire engine and passed by the house of pele’s mother, dona celeste, who turned 100 last year. thiago silva, sandra garcia and 11-year-old enzo were among the thousands who queued up to pay their respects to pele.
Procession took place on monday, and the wake was held outside the urbano caldeira stadium. torcida jovem, a supporters’ club, gathered with huge black and white banners, wearing pele’s famous number 10 shirt and chanting “only pele, 1,000 goals”. marcia simoes, standing with her sons eduardo and mario at the road leading to pele’s burial place, commented, “he was important for the whole world, for young people too. i’m prouder than ever to be from santos.”
Procession and wake were held to celebrate the life of pele, who was celebrated for his role in uniting brazilians, regardless of political and economic divisions. despite the political divisions that have arisen over the past few months, the people of brazil united in mourning when news of pele’s death was announced. president luiz inácio lula da silva arrived to the wake to pay his respects shortly before it ended, amidst cheers and calls for him to be in prison. deofilo de freitas was the first one in line on monday, and he said that pele had united all of them in mourning.