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Jackson, Daley attend Bernie Mac memorial

As Cedric the Entertainer scanned the crowd of more than 6,000 gathered in Chicago to remember Bernie Mac on Saturday, he cracked that the comedian was “still the hottest ticket in town.”

Fans, friends and fellow celebrities descended on the House of Hope church to bid their farewells to Mac, who died Aug. 9 at age 50 from what his publicist said were complications from pneumonia.

Mayor Richard Daley recalled that Mac was in his office recently, asking how he could help fight violent crime in the city.

“He wanted to help get children away from a life of crime and violence,” Daley said during the service. “That's why he's the king of comedy. He never lost his soul in Chicago.”

Samuel L. Jackson, who co-stars with Mac in the upcoming movie “Soul Men,” spoke at the church, saying he knew Mac “was having some health issues, but he always said to me every morning that he was always good.” Isaac Hayes, who died last Sunday, also stars in the movie.

Associated Press

Birthdays

Actor Robert De Niro, 65. Singer Belinda Carlisle, 50. Actor Sean Penn, 48. Singer Donnie Wahlberg, 39. Tennis player Jim Courier, 38.

This day in history Aug. 17

1863: Federal batteries and ships began bombarding Fort Sumter in Charleston harbor during the Civil War.

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