Death and state funeral of Boris Yeltsin

Funeral of Boris Yeltsin-6.jpg
Boris Yeltsin, the first President of Russia, died of cardiac arrest on April 23, 2007, twelve days after being admitted to the Central Clinical Hospital in Moscow. Yeltsin was the first Russian head of state to be buried in a church ceremony since Emperor Alexander III, 113 years prior.

On the day Yeltsin died, President Vladimir Putin declared the day of his funeral, held on 25 April 2007, to be a day of national mourning. The ceremony was broadcast live on the main Russian state TV channels, and was attended by current and former heads of state, with a number of them expressing their condolences. The lowering of the coffin into the grave was accompanied by an artillery salute.

Yeltsin died due of heart failure at 3:45 p.m., Moscow time, as a result of progressive multiple organ dysfunction syndrome. Yeltsin was hospitalized for 12 days before his death. He was mostly bedridden for the last week, experiencing a sharp deterioration in his health along with heart pain in the last three days. Yeltsin's condition improved slightly on the morning of his death, but then his heart stopped twice, and doctors were unable to revive him the second time. According to Renat Akchurin, the heart surgeon who performed Yeltsin's bypass surgery in 1996, this heart failure was unexpected. An autopsy was carried out on the request of his relatives.

Shortly before his death, Yeltsin had traveled to the Middle East (Jordan, Israel and the Palestinian Territories), which may have contributed to his health deteriorating.

President Vladimir Putin telephoned Yeltsin's widow Naina Yeltsin on April 25, 2007 to express his condolences. Others to express theirs were Angela Merkel, Jacques Chirac, George W. Bush, Lech Kaczynski, Helmut Kohl, Tony Blair and Bill Clinton. Students and staff of his native Urals State Technical University held a minute's silence and mourning to honor the former leader's memory.

The day after his death, a farewell ceremony was held at the Cathedral of Christ the Savior, at 16:30 Moscow time. A half-couch casket and the Russian flag were placed in the center of the church, near a stand with Yeltsin's awards and portrait. The requiem liturgy was given by the Vicar of the Moscow Diocese Archbishop Arseny (Epifanov). An honor guard was present, formed of soldiers from the Kremlin Regiment. The church was open for viewing all evening and night, with around 25,000 people coming to pay their respects. All through the memorial service, representatives were present to accept condolences to the Yeltsin family members: his widow Naina, daughters Elena Okulova and Tatyana Dyachenko, and his grandchildren.

This page was last edited on 30 October 2017, at 16:01.
Reference: under CC BY-SA license.

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