Inside Réne Angélil's Funeral: A Heartbroken Céline, Réne-Charles’ Speech, and More
Céline Dion said a final farewell to her husband Réne Angélil on Friday at his funeral in Montreal.
The singer looked heartbroken beneath a veil as she arrived to the Notre-Dame Basilica in Old Montreal in head-to-toe black with her son René-Charles, 15, and twins Nelson and Eddy, 5.
The family entered the church, René-Charles escorting his grandmother Thérèse Dion as Céline walked hand-in-hand with Nelson and Eddy.
They stopped in front of René's closed casket to pay their respects, Dion leaving lilies for her late husband before the group took their seats at the front of the cathedral.
Among the moving eulogies and readings was René-Charles' tribute to his father, which brought the crowd to its feet.
He told the crowd, “Fifteen years is not a long time to get to know your father. He had a busy life, but we were getting to know each other through golf, poker, smoked meat, and other wonderful food.”
René-Charles continued, “You've left me with enough good memories to share with my younger brothers. You are a tough act to follow, but with your help... I promise you we are all going to live up to your standards.”
His older brother, Patrick Angélil, also gave a touching speech. “He never missed a chance to tell us he loved us. Now, more than ever, we realize how exceptional it was to have a father who never hesitated to say those so precious words.”
While Céline did not sing, four of her recordings were featured, including, “Trois Heures Vingt” and “All the Way.”
At the close of the funeral, the pallbearers moved the casket down the aisle and Dion followed, with Nelson and Eddy by her side.
Outside, Dion and the children stopped to pay their respects one more time.
In an especially heartbreaking gesture, Celine kissed the casket.
When it was time to leave, Dion looked extremely sad as she looked up at the church one last time.