WORLD Hawking's memorial service held at Westminster Abbey

WORLD

Hawking's memorial service held at Westminster Abbey

Xinhua

15:10, June 16, 2018

Lucy Hawking (L, front) and Timothy Hawking (R, front) attend the memorial service for their father Stephen Hawking at Westminster Abbey in London, Britain, on June 15, 2018. Renowned scholars, astronauts, actors, family and many others attended a memorial service held at Westminster Abbey here on Friday, paying tributes to Stephen Hawking. Hawking's ashes were buried in the Abbey's Scientists' Corner alongside other great scientists such as Charles Darwin and Isaac Newton. (Xinhua/Ray Tang)

Renowned scholars, astronauts, actors, family and many others attended a memorial service held at Westminster Abbey here on Friday, paying tributes to the physicist Professor Stephen Hawking.

Guests of the service were welcomed by volunteers from the opening ceremony of the 2012 London Paralympic Games.

Guest Lee R Balthazor, former president of the Royal Aeronautical Society, told Xinhua that Hawking had "inspired generations of people through the works he has done in physics and also in terms of inspiring young people...He has overcome all those difficulties through just sheer determination. I think that is an inspiration, really, for everyone."

Some one thousand members of the public were also offered the opportunity to attend the service. But many who were not lucky enough to get a ticket still came to the abbey to pay their tributes.

Hawking's ashes are to be buried in the Abbey's Scientists' Corner alongside other great scientists such as Charles Darwin and Isaac Newton. Engraved on Hawking's gravestone is his most famous equation describing the entropy of a black hole.

During his long academic life, Hawking focused his research primarily on cosmology, black holes and string theory. He also devoted his time to supervising research students, conducting workshops across the world and leading seminars which are often based on his groundbreaking papers.

As a tribute to Hawking, his words have been set to an original score by Greek composer Vangelis and will be beamed into space towards the nearest black hole after the service.

Hawking, who suffered from motor neurone disease, died on March 14 at the age of 76.

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