Photo credits: The Marley Estate
On May 21, 1981, a memorial service commemorating the life of legendary reggae musician Bob Marley was conducted at Nine Mile, the hamlet where he had been born 36 years previously.
His massive bronze coffin was hauled to the tallest hill in the hamlet, where it was deposited in a makeshift mausoleum that had been painted in the colors red, green, and gold. In addition to the preserved body of Bob Marley, the coffin had his red Gibson Les Paul guitar, a Bible with the page turned to Psalm 23, and a sprig of marijuana that had been put inside by his widow, Rita.
The public presentation of the country’s national budget had to be put off for a few days in order to make room for the state burial being held for Marley. Organizers send out invitations. It was imperative that the mausoleum be built. A security plan was put in place for the National Arena, which was going to be the location of the major event. Edward Seaga, the Prime Minister of Jamaica, was the one to offer the eulogy.
Marley’s songs of love, peace, and spirituality continue to have a significant impact; long after he has passed away.