A crowd of dignitaries, ordinary people honor Mayor Ed Lee at the City Hall Memorial

Billionaires, baseball players, politicians and ordinary people filled San Francisco City Hall on Sunday to celebrate the life of Mayor Ed Lee, a man remembered for his dignity, humility and passion for the city.

"Our mayor had kindness, he had class, he served others before himself," said the acting mayor, London Breed. "He listened, he cared and fought for our city, all its people, with the quiet dignity of a man who knows exactly what it represents."

An estimated 1,600 people congregated at the rotunda and at City Hall balconies to celebrate the life of a man who began his career as a civil rights lawyer and served in the San Francisco government for years as a chancellor bureaucrat, He then became mayor in 2011 and won the office elections twice.

Hundreds more listened outside the building and in an overflow room in the Main Library to what Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom called "a tribute to decency."

Lee was "someone who was not great in some ways, but he had friends like Willie Mays and Joe Montana, about the coolest people on Earth," Newsom said. That was because he was "a decent and honorable human being who always wanted to do the right thing".

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