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Old Nov 30, 2001, 07:09 AM   #3
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Default Re: News Coverage of George\'s Death

Flags lowered as Liverpool mourns
November 30, 2001 Posted: 9:39 AM EST (1439 GMT)

LIVERPOOL, England -- Flags are flying at half mast in Liverpool, birthplace of The Beatles, as the city mourns the death of former Fab Four guitarist George Harrison.

Lord Mayor Gerry Scott said Harrison would be much missed by the people of the city, and a memorial service was planned to mark his "exceptional and gifted life."

"George Harrison was one of the great Liverpudlians. He was a warm, peace-loving man who much more than just a talented musician," Scott told Reuters.

Liverpool has always been fiercely proud of its famous sons and news of Harrison's death, although not entirely unexpected, had sent a wave of sadness through the city, a council spokeswoman said.

Flags had been lowered to half-mast and a book of condolence had been opened at the council offices. People began queuing up to sign it as soon as the news broke, she said.

"Everyone who knew of George Harrison knew he was a true Scouser who never forgot his roots. He was a great ambassador of for the city," council leader Mike Storey told Reuters.

Harrison, the youngest member of the Beatles, was awarded the freedom of the city in 1984.

Fans also gathered outside Harrison's Oxfordshire home on Friday to pay their respects.

Bouquets of flowers were being left outside the gates of his 10 million ($15 million) estate, Friar Park, Henley-on-Thames.

One family friend told the Press Association: "I just wanted to pay my respects. We've got lots of nasty people in the world who seem to live forever.

"It seems to be the good ones who pass away before their time. George said in one of his songs 'all things must pass' -- he understood the cycle of things."

A crowd of students from nearby Henley College gathered alongside members of the media outside the 120-room gothic mansion, which is set in 34 acres of gardens and was home to the superstar since 1971.

Pupil Dan Western, 16, from Reading, Berkshire, said: "He was a great rock and roll star. He led a very good life, it's just a shame he's gone now."

His friend Roy Davidson, 16, who lives locally, said: "I grew up with his songs. Whenever we went on holidays, the Beatles always came on, Sergeant Pepper and all that."

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