A long line of people, some chanting “No justice, no peace”, waited outside a church in North Carolina for a memorial service for George Floyd, as America braced for some of its largest protests yet in the unrest triggered by his killing by a Minneapolis police officer.
A hearse carrying Floyd’s body arrived Saturday morning for a public viewing of his casket and private memorial held in Hoke county in the southern state.
Floyd was born in Fayetteville, North Carolina – a city just east of Hoke county. Though he spent much of his life in Houston, much of Floyd’s family is still there, the Charlotte Observer reported.
The governor of North Carolina ordered flags to be raised at half-staff on Saturday in Floyd’s honor.
The memorial in North Carolina is Floyd’s second. A memorial was held at a university in Minneapolis, two miles from where Floyd was killed. A third and final memorial will be held in Houston, where Floyd will be laid to rest.
Officials across the country were also preparing for another day of widespread demonstrations in response to the killing and Floyd and subsequent, often violent, resistance by police to the protesters.
Demonstrators across multiple states are gearing up for a 12th day of protests, but the nation’s capital is anticipated to be home to the largest crowd yet on Saturday. City officials say they expect anywhere between 50,000 to 100,000 people to participate.
Muriel Bowser, the Democratic mayor of Washington who has been critical of Trump’s handling of the protests, encouraged people on Twitter to meet at Black Lives Matter Plaza – the street outside the White House Bowser renamed in honor of the movement – on Saturday.
Certain streets in the city have been closed to vehicle traffic in anticipation of the protest.