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George Steinbrenner's family mourns at Florida cemetery

7:58 PM, Jul 17, 2010   |    comments
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TRINITY, Fla. (AP) – The family of George Steinbrenner placed a casket inside a mausoleum at a cemetery near Tampa on Saturday, four days after the death of the New York Yankees owner.

The two sons and two daughters of the 80-year-old owner were joined by his wife, Joan, at Trinity Memorial Garden Cemetery.

Neither the Yankees nor cemetery officials would confirm that services were taking place. The cemetery is located in Pasco County, about a half-hour drive north of Steinbrenner's home.

 

Yankees co-chairmen Hal and Hank Steinbrenner and daughters Jessica Steinbrenner and Jennifer Steinbrenner Swindal arrived on a steamy, humid afternoon with temperatures in the 90s. About 40 people were there, including Yankees employees. Flags within sight were at half staff.

Those who gathered spent about 45 minutes inside a large building on the property, then walked outside into waiting vehicles. A hearse and five SUVs then drove a short distance to the grey stone mausoleum, where the two sons stood in front.

A casket was taken from the hearse – Steinbrenner's two sons were among the pallbearers – and brought inside the mausoleum as family members watched.

Hank Steinbrenner then escorted his mother into the tomb.

The family spent less than 10 minutes inside. Joan Steinbrenner then shook hands with cemetery employees as mourners began leaving the grounds, and the family left in a caravan of cars a little after 4 p.m.

The mausoleum is across a busy road from a horse ranch. Steinbrenner was passionate about horses and owned a horse farm in Ocala, Fla.

George Steinbrenner, who had turned over day-to-day operations of the Yankees to his sons in 2007, died of a heart attack Tuesday in Tampa. A public memorial is expected to be held at a later date, although plans have not been announced.

Steinbrenner was honored Friday night at Yankee Stadium, where the team played for the first time since his death. Mariano Rivera (FSY) laid two long-stemmed red roses across home plate, tears filled manager Joe Girardi's eyes and Derek Jeter (FSY) asked for a moment of silence. Fans stood as "Taps" echoed through the palatial ballpark Steinbrenner helped build.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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