Final farewell to George Floyd: Family shares emotional eulogy, Rev. Sharpton calls for justice

George Floyd, the black man who was killed in Minneapolis police custody two weeks ago, will be laid to rest today in Pearland, Texas.

It's a day Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo officially proclaimed "George Perry Floyd, Jr. Day."

The funeral service, which was paid for by legendary boxer Floyd Mayweather, was held at The Fountain of Praise Church in southwest Houston.

FOX 26 will carry the funeral service live on-air and on

Mourners and pallbearers gather near flowers as the coffin arrives for the funeral for George Floyd on June 9, 2020, at The Fountain of Praise church in Houston, Texas. (Photo by ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS/AFP via Getty Images)

Family, friends and notable figures gathered at 11 a.m. to pay their respects to Floyd.

Dozens of Floyd's family members, most dressed in white, were led into the sanctuary by the Rev. Al Sharpton, who delivered the eulogy.

PHOTOS: Family, notable figures gather together to say goodbye to George Floyd

Family and friends attend the funeral service for George Floyd in the chapel at the Fountain of Praise church June 9, 2020 in Houston. (Photo by David J. Phillip-Pool/Getty Images)

Those who attended the service included Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, Attorney Benjamin Crump, Slim Thug, Leela James, Paul Wall, Floyd Mayweather, Congressman Al Green, Bishop James Dixon, JJ Watt, Jaimie Foxx and Channing Tatum.

OFFICIAL LIST: Speakers and order of George Floyd funeral service

R&B singer Ne-Yo performed "It’s So Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday" at Floyd’s funeral. He was so emotional, he struggled to get through the performance and eventually had to have music play him out.


In a recorded video played during the service, Joe Biden offered both a heartfelt message to Floyd's family and an impassioned plea for racial justice.

"For most people, the numbness you feel now, will slowly turn, day after day, season after season, into purpose through the memory of the one they lost," Biden said. "But for you, that day has come before you can fully grieve."

MORE: 'Now is the time for racial justice': Biden delivers video message at George Floyd funeral

"Unlike most, you must grieve in public. It’s a burden, a burden that is now your purpose to change the world for the better in the name of George Floyd," the former vice president added.


Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner also offered remarks during the service and announced that he would sign an executive order to ban the use of chokeholds by law enforcement.

"In this city, we will require de-escalation. In this city, you have to give a warning before you shoot. In this city, you have a duty to intervene. In this city, we will require comprehensive reporting," Turner said.

MORE: Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner will sign order to ban chokeholds

Mayor Turner also proclaimed June 9 "George Perry Day" in the City of Houston.


"I would like to thank the whole world for what it has done for my family," Floyd’s aunt, Kathleen McGee, told the crowd. "The world knows George Floyd. But I know Perry Jr. He was a pesky little rascal, but we all loved him."

A painting depicting Floyd with angel wings and a halo was placed on stage next to loved ones as they shared memories of the 46-year-old father and brother, athlete and mentor, and now a force for change.

MORE: Family members give tearful eulogies for George Floyd in Houston service

"I thank God for giving me my own personal Superman," his brother told the crowd through tears.

Floyd's niece Brooke Williams delivered an impassioned speech, in which she called her uncle's death "not just murder, but a hate crime."

"I'm George Floyd's niece and I can breathe. As long as I'm breathing, justice will be served for Perry," Williams decried from the podium. "Someone said make America great again. But when has America ever been great?"


Rev. Al Sharpton, the prominent civil rights activist, spoke on racial injustice in the U.S. during his eulogy at the funeral of George Floyd. In his impassioned speech, Sharpton criticized the response of major corporations on Floyd’s death and called for equal protections of black and white Americans under the law.  

"Until we know the price of black life is the same as the price for white life, we are going to keep coming back to these situations over and over again. Either the law will work or it won’t work," Sharpton said. 

The services have drawn the families of other black individuals killed by police, names that have become part of the debate over race and justice — among them, Eric Garner, Michael Brown, Ahmaud Arbery and Trayvon Martin.

MORE: Al Sharpton delivers impassioned eulogy at George Floyd funeral

Sharpton pointed out of Floyd’s family members, saying "they wanted to be here to be part of this because they understand the pain better than anyone, because they’ve gone through the pain."

One by one, the mother of Trayvon Martin, the mother of Eric Garner, the sister of Botham John, the family of Pamela Turner, Michael Brown’s father and Ahmaud Arbery’s father were introduced by Sharpton, each given a standing ovation by the audience.

"All of these families came to stand with this family because they know better than anyone else the pain they will suffer from the loss that they have gone through," said Sharpton. 

Rev. Al Sharpton enters the The Fountain of Praise church for the private funeral for George Floyd on June 9, 2020 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Godofredo A. Vásquez - Pool/Getty Images)

Following the funeral, Floyd’s procession will be escorted by the Houston Police Department to the Houston Memorial Gardens in Pearland. The interment is private.

Floyd's body will be transported in a horse-drawn hearse.

Pearland Police asks drivers to avoid Cullen Road, which will be closed to roadway traffic from Freedom Blvd to Clear Creek.

The funeral comes a day after thousands of people paid their respects at a public viewing for George Floyd in Houston.

MORE: 6,362 mourners pay final respects to George Floyd at public viewing in Houston

The six-hour viewing began at noon, but people started to line up hours before. 

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and former Vice President Joe Biden were in attendance. 

Floyd's family also made an appearance alongside families of other police brutality victims to give a speech to the crowd.

Last week, around 60,000 people gathered in downtown Houston alongside Floyd's family to take part in a historic march to honor.

MORE: George Floyd's family joined 60,000 people in historic Houston march

Floyd was raised in Houston’s Third Ward. The 46-year-old died while in the custody of Minneapolis police last month.

He graduated in 1993 from Yates High School in Houston, where his friends remember him as a football and basketball star.

A mural of him has been painted in his old Third Ward neighborhood, and another was painted at the Breakfast Klub.

Floyd was also honored at a memorial service in Minneapolis on Thursday and another in North Carolina on Saturday.