BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Three days of public events from Thursday through Saturday will honor former Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco, the state’s first female governor who died after a yearslong struggle with cancer.
The Democrat who led Louisiana during hurricanes Katrina and Rita will be memorialized Thursday at an interfaith service in downtown Baton Rouge at St. Joseph’s Cathedral. Her casket then will be taken to the Louisiana Capitol, where Blanco’s body will be met with a military salute and lie in Memorial Hall for public visitation.
On Friday, mourners in Louisiana’s Acadiana region can attend a prayer service for the former governor at St. John the Evangelist Cathedral in Lafayette. Blanco’s funeral mass on Saturday also will be at the cathedral in Lafayette, followed by a private burial service.
A full schedule of events is available online .
The Baton Rouge service and the funeral mass in Lafayette will be aired live around the state by Louisiana Public Broadcasting, and visitors are being warned that seating for the general public in the cathedrals may be limited.
Blanco, a devout Catholic who held Louisiana’s top elected job for one-term from 2004 to 2008, died Sunday from an incurable melanoma. She was 76.
Her family is requesting donations in lieu of flowers to the Governor Kathleen Blanco Public Policy Center at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.