Bill Clinton to speak at Katz memorial

Bill Clinton with Lewis Katz. Clinton is to speak at the 11 a.m. service at Temple University in memory of Katz, killed with six others in a Massachusetts plane crash Saturday.
Bill Clinton with Lewis Katz. Clinton is to speak at the 11 a.m. service at Temple University in memory of Katz, killed with six others in a Massachusetts plane crash Saturday. (at the 11 a.m. service at Temple University in memory of Katz, killed with six others in a Massachusetts plane crash Saturday.)
Posted: June 05, 2014

Former President Bill Clinton is among a high-powered cast of dignitaries scheduled to speak at the memorial service for Lewis Katz at Temple University on Wednesday morning.

Gov. Corbett, former Gov. Ed Rendell, Bill Cosby, Mayor Nutter, New Jersey Sen. Cory A. Booker, and Inquirer editor William K. Marimow also are on the list of 15 speakers expected to bid goodbye to Katz, the philanthropist and Temple benefactor who was killed Saturday in a plane crash outside Boston.

"It's very clearly going to be a place where people will want to come and pay their respects to Lewis Katz," said Temple spokesman Ray Betzner.

Katz, a co-owner of The Inquirer, was among seven people killed when his private jet crashed during takeoff in Bedford, Mass. Investigators are looking into the cause.

He and three friends were attending an education fund-raising event in Concord at the home of the historian Doris Kearns Goodwin and her husband, Richard Goodwin, an adviser to Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson. Doris Kearns Goodwin also is on the speakers list.

The service is to begin at 11 a.m. at Temple's Performing Arts Center, 1837 N. Broad St. - the former Baptist Temple - which can hold 1,200. Doors open at 10 a.m. An overflow area will be set up in nearby Mitten Hall to accommodate an additional 600, Betzner said.

The service will also be streamed live on Temple's website, www.temple.edu, and broadcast on Temple's television station, TUTV, accessible in the city on Comcast Channel 50 and Verizon Channel 45. In addition, NBC10 will air the entire service on its station and on NBC10.com.

Other speakers include Ed Snider, owner of the Flyers; Patrick O'Connor, chair of Temple's board of trustees; Temple president Neil Theobald; Rabbi Aaron Krupnick of Congregation Beth El; and Katz's son, Drew; daughter, Melissa Silver; and grandson Ethan Silver.

The university has worked with the city, state, and federal governments on security, Betzner said. "We will have security appropriate to the occasion," he said.

Betzner said that the university would have held the service in the larger Liacouras Center, but that a high school graduation already was scheduled for the same time. University officials expect lots of traffic and congestion, and recommend public transportation. Parking will be available in the Liacouras Center garage.

In 1925, when Temple founder Russell Conwell died, thousands of people from across the city flocked to his funeral, filling the Baptist Temple and standing outside to pay their respects, according to an account by the university.

"It will be interesting to see if the scene is the same," Betzner said.

Katz, a 1963 grad, was the largest donor in Temple's history, the university said, most recently pledging $25 million for its medical school, which will be named for him. The 72-year-old had served on the board of trustees since 1998.


ssnyder@phillynews.com

215-854-4693 @ssnyderinq

www.inquirer.com/campusinq

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