Stephen Hawking’s ashes to be buried in Westminster Abbey

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Britain Stephen Hawking_138579

LONDON (AP) — Stephen Hawking will take his place among Britain’s greatest scientists when his ashes are buried in Westminster Abbey, between the graves of Charles Darwin and Isaac Newton.

More than 1,000 people are due Friday at a service of thanksgiving for the physicist, who died in March aged 76 after decades living with motor neuron disease.

The service will include readings by actor Benedict Cumberbatch, who played Hawking in a BBC drama, and astronaut Tim Peake.

Afterward, Hawking’s words, set to music by Greek composer Vangelis, will be beamed into space from a European Space Agency satellite dish in Spain. Hawking’s daughter, Lucy, said the music would be aimed at “the nearest black hole, 1A 0620-00.”

Guests at the service will include 1,000 members of the public selected by ballot.

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