Academy Award-winning actor Eddie Redmayne was one of many who attended a private funeral service Saturday for Stephen Hawking in Cambridge, England. Redmayne, who played Hawking in the 2014 biopic The Theory of Everything, gave a reading from Ecclesiastes during the service.
Hawking, who suffered from motor neurone disease, died on March 14 at the age of 76. He left a legacy behind one of the greatest minds when it came to science, black holes and other wonders of cosmology. His book, A Brief History In Time was written in 1988 and became a best-seller. To this day, it remains an influential piece of popular science literature.
According to the Associated Press, Nearly 500 guests attended Hawking’s funeral. In addition to Redmayne, Astronomer Royal Martin Reese gave a reading. Eulogies were also read by one of Hawking’s children as well as one of his former students. The service was officiated by the Rev. Cally Hammond, Dean of Cambridge University’s Gonville and Caius College, where Hawking was a fellow for 52 years.
In tribute to Hawking, many flags were lowered to half-mast in Cambridge. He will be cremated at a later date and his ashes will be placed in London’s Westminster Abbey near fellow science icon Isaac Newton.