×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Friends, Family and Fans Pay Tribute to Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds at Hollywood Memorial Service

A throng of friends, family and fans paid tribute to Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds at a memorial service on Saturday at Forest Lawn cemetery.

The tribute spanned decades of Hollywood history, with a hip-hop version of “Singin’ in the Rain,” scores of candid family photographs, and an appearance by R2D2.

“My mother didn’t like funerals and memorials,” said Todd Fisher, who organized the tribute to his mother and sister. “She liked shows.”

Fans started lining up outside the Hall of Liberty at 7 a.m., seeking to pay their respects one last time. Kenneth Parkhurst, 43, drove down from his home in the Sacramento area.

Todd Fisher
Debbie Reynolds’ son and Carrie Fisher’s brother, Todd, embraces R2D2 at his mother and sister’s memorial (Photo by Stewart Cook/Variety/REX/Shutterstock).

“I have a life-size Yoda at my home. ‘Star Wars’ is part of who I am,” Parkhurst said, adding that he found it a touching send-off. “Everyone knows Carrie as a princess. You got to learn about Carrie as a person.”

“Carrie’s life would never be the same,” he said. “Our friendship never changed.”Gavin de Becker, who was also part of the Beverly Hills group, delivered deeply heartfelt remarks in which he remembered Fisher’s electric presence as a teenager.

“We all had a crush on Carrie like you wouldn’t believe,” he said. They would go down the hallway together singing “Puttin’ on the Ritz,” her life was touched with glamour, he said.

“Carrie’s life was a walk with great people,” he said. “Her parties were legendary.”

De Becker also noted Fisher’s habit of revealing herself, warts and all, and how it made her a symbol of acceptance and of women’s power.

She showed, he said, “that it’s possible to be dignified, and even elegant, in that mess.”

Reynolds’ friends also spoke about her lifelong love of dance and her support for charities. Of special note was her support for the mental health of returning veterans, a cause that arose from her USO tours during the Korean War.

“I have great respect for Debbie Reynolds. I felt a kinship with her personally,” said Leytes Styles, a fan from Simi Valley who showed up at 7:30 a.m. for the 1 p.m. service.

Styles and her friend were lined up alongside “Star Wars” fans. “You had both generations,” she said. “It was beautifully done.”

Mary Valenti, of Tampa, Fla., was on vacation with her family, and came to the service straight from the airport.

“As a girl with five brothers, Princess Leia was my hero growing up,” Valenti said. “She was everything to me.”

More Scene

  • Jordan Peele'Us' film premiere, Arrivals, New

    Jordan Peele Explains the Meaning Behind the 'Us' Michael Jackson Reference

    Jordan Peele’s horror movie “Us” is filled with pop culture references, from “Jaws” to “Goonies.” But the most divisive might be right in his opening sequence. Warning, minor spoilers ahead. The movie about a couple (played by Lupita Nyong’o and Winston Duke) and their children being hunted and brutalized by a mysterious family that looks just [...]

  • Danielle Brooks'Ain't Too Proud - The

    How 'Orange Is the New Black' Star Danielle Brooks Became a Broadway Producer

    Danielle Brooks earned a Tony nomination when she made her Broadway debut as Sofia in the 2015 revival of “The Color Purple,” but now the “Orange Is the New Black” star is working behind the scenes as a producer on the new jukebox musical “Ain’t Too Proud: The Life and Times of the Temptations.” “I [...]

  • Nick Offerman Amy Poehler

    'Parks and Recreation' Cast Talks Possibility of a Revival at 10th Anniversary Reunion

    For one night, Hollywood felt a little like Pawnee. The cast of NBC’s hit comedy “Parks and Recreation” reunited at PaleyFest on Thursday in honor of the show’s 10th anniversary. The whole Pawnee gang showed up: Amy Poehler, Chris Pratt, Aubrey Plaza, Nick Offerman, Aziz Ansari, Rob Lowe, Adam Scott, Rashida Jones, Retta, and Jim [...]

  • Andy CohenThe Shops and Restaurants at

    Andy Cohen to Receive Vito Russo Award at GLAAD Media Awards

    Mazel, Andy Cohen! Bravo’s late-night talk show host is set to receive the Vito Russo Award at the 30th annual GLAAD Media Awards on May 4 in New York City. Sarah Jessica Parker will present him with the award, which is named in honor of GLAAD founder Vito Russo. The annual award goes to openly [...]

  • Variety TV Summit Europe

    Variety TV Summit Europe Coming to London on June 13

    Variety’s TV Summit Europe will coincide with London Tech Week this year, returning to the city on June 13. The international conference will be held at the Royal Lancaster and is co-produced by global events company Informa’s KNect365 division, the world’s largest business-to-business organizer. The one-day summit will focus on the intersection of content and [...]

  • David Furnish, Bryce Dallas Howard, Taron

    'Rocketman': Paramount Previews Footage of Elton John Biopic

    “Rocketman” is ready for lift off. Paramount Pictures threw a cocktail party Monday night to preview 15 minutes of the upcoming Elton John biopic, set for release on May 31, at the Troubadour in Los Angeles, the legendary rock club where John made his U.S. debut nearly 50 years ago. The footage featured pieces of [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content