Exactly two weeks after he was killed by a former Minneapolis police officer, thousands of mourners are expected to come together in Houston, Texas, on Monday to pay their respects to George Floyd. Houston officials say that they are "anticipating close to 10,000" people at Monday's public visitation for Floyd, among them politicians and entertainers, including presumed Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, according to CNN.
The visitation will take place at The Fountain of Praise Church in Houston, where Floyd grew up, from noon to 6 p.m., La'Torria Lemon, spokeswoman for the funeral home, confirmed. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, and to adhere to social distancing guidelines, only 15 guests will be allowed in at a time. They will be allowed to stay inside for no more than 15 minutes and must wear a face mask or covering and gloves.
According to Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo, it was "a big deal for our city to bring him back home," as Floyd was "well known, he's known by a lot of our officers." Floyd had grown up in the city's Third Ward and graduated from Jack Yates High School in 1992, where he helped the football team win the state title. Acevedo said that "we want to make sure that the family is safe, that the movement is safe" and they "want to make sure that the family knows that we're here for them and we support them at this time."
Monday's public visitation will mark just the latest event to take place as Floyd's family prepares to lay him to rest. The first of two memorial services was held for Floyd Thursday at North Central University's sanctuary in downtown Minneapolis. Although that service was closed to the public, though livestreamed across a number of networks, a second memorial service in Raeford, North Carolina over the weekend was open to the public. Hundreds of people lined up to see Floyd’s closed casket and pay their respects.
A funeral service is scheduled to take place Tuesday at The Fountain of Praise Church at 9 a.m. Although the service is private, a number of notable people will attend, including Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and actor Jamie Foxx. Biden, meanwhile, will not attend the service as his team does not want to cause any disruptions from Biden's Secret Service protection. Biden will instead tape a video message for the service. The service will be available via streaming on The Fountain of Praise Church website. Floyd will be buried in Houston next to his mother.