Thousands gathered yesterday morning at Penn State to say their last goodbyes to fallen coach Joe Paterno, with family, friends and former players attending a private funeral service afterwards.

 

Plenty of tears dropped in his honor by fans who came from across the state and country on day two of his public memorial. The last day will be today. The service is free to the public — but, characteristic of sports events, all the free tickets are gone, swooped up in a few minutes Tuesday.

 

Paterno’s wife Sue was among the first to arrive for his funeral at 2 p.m., according to reports.

 

“He realized an athlete could be a student, and a student could be an athlete,” Jim McClure, a Penn State football season ticketholder for 39 years, told Reuters yesterday after paying his tributes to the dead coach.

 

The memorial today will begin in the Bryce Jordan Center, the campus basketball arena Many current players, former players and season ticket holders will come to pay their respects. Classes have already been cancelled by the school and some of the professors so the students can attend the memorial.