Who receives formal military funerals

State funeral - State funeral

Public memorial service in honor of people of national importance

A state funeral is a public funeral ceremony that adheres to strict protocol rules to honor people of national importance. State funerals usually involve a lot of pomp and ceremony, as well as religious overtones and distinctive elements of military tradition. Typically, state funerals are held to involve the public on a national day of mourning after the deceased's family gives their consent. A state funeral will often generate mass advertising in both national and global media.







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Eva Perón died in 1952 at the age of 33. She held the title of Spiritual Leader of the Argentine Nation conferred by the Argentine Congress. Almost three million people reported Evita's funeral on the streets of Buenos Aires. A radio broadcast interrupted the broadcast and the announcer read, "The Office of the Nation's Presidency Press Secretary is doing its very sad duty to inform the people of the Republic that Ms. Eva Perón, Spiritual Leader of the Nation, has died at 8:25 pm . "Eva Perón was granted a state funeral and a full Roman Catholic requiem mass. On Saturday, August 9th, the body was taken to the congress building for another day for public viewing. The next day, after a final Sunday mass, the coffin was pulled onto a covered carriage by CGT officials. Next came Juan Perón, his cabinet, Eva's family and friends, the delegates and representatives of the Partido Peronista Femenino, then workers, nurses and students of the Eva Perón Foundation. Her coffin was showered with carnations, orchids, chrysanthemums, wallflowers and roses that were thrown from the nearby balconies as the procession went through the streets.

Juan Perón died on July 1, 1974 at the age of 78 after his health deteriorated. His wife and Vice President, Isabel Martínez de Perón, made the announcement: " It is with great sadness that I convey the death of this true apostle of peace and nonviolence to the people of Argentina. "The remains were moved to a crypt in the Quinta de Olivos Presidential at the Argentine National Congress for Hundreds of Thousands of People. On November 17, 1974, the remains of Evita. While the body was in Congress, over 135,000 people passed the coffin while a A million Argentinians from outside had to say goodbye to their leader, and two thousand foreign journalists covered the details of the funeral.

Raul Alfonsín died on March 31, 2009 at the age of 82 after a long battle with lung cancer and. in his last days broncoaspirativa pneumonia. The Argentine government declared three days of national mourning for the death, and his remains were veiled from the early hours of April 1, 2009 in the Blue Room of the National Congress, which was attended by authorities and politicians from various parties, an estimated 80,000 people had to wait five to six hours stand in the queue. Political authorities who attended the event included former presidents Carlos Menem, Eduardo Duhalde, Fernando De la Rua and Nestor Kirchner. President Cristina Fernandez was unable to attend because they were in the G-20 in London, but expressed condolences. The next day, they were taken to a military arms wagon that was escorted by the mounted grenadiers regiment at Recoleta Cemetery in Buenos Aires. The remains of the former president, temporarily resting in the vault of the fallen in the park until May 16, have been transferred to a single memorial in the cemetery in a place made of gray and beige marble, on which there is a cross and a cross bright stained glass by entering a shimmer.

Former Argentine President and Secretary General of UNASUR, Néstor Kirchner, died of heart failure on the morning of October 27, 2010 at Jose Formenti Hospital in El Calafate, Santa Cruz Province, at the age of 60, and resuscitated him did not. His wife, President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, was with him when he died. He was also expected to run for president in 2011.


On November 3, 2010, a state funeral for former Prime Minister of Barbados, David Thompson, was held in Bridgetown.


State funerals were held for the elected President of Brazil, Tancredo Neves, who died before he took office. Former Brazilian Vice President José Alencar was also buried with an honorary head after his death from cancer. In addition to the heads of state, there were personalities such as Formula 1 racing champion Ayrton Senna, who died in 1994 after falling during a race, and architect Oscar Niemeyer, who died in 2012 at the age of 104.


In Canada, state funerals are public events held to commemorate current and former Governors General, current and former Prime Ministers, seated members of the Ministry (Privy Council), and other prominent Canadians at the Prime Minister's discretion. Incorporating ceremonial, military, and religious elements, the Government of Canada offers and conducts state funerals that provide the Canadian people with a worthy opportunity to mourn a national public figure.

In 2006, at the request of the NDP, the House of Commons unanimously voted for a state funeral when the last Canadian World War I veteran died. However, John Babcock, after becoming the last surviving veteran, stated that he did not feel the need to be honored in such a way.

In August 2011, in a rare circumstance, Prime Minister Stephen Harper offered a state funeral for his political opponent and opposition leader, Jack Layton. Layton died of cancer three months after his New Democratic Party became the official opposition for the first time in his party's history.

In 2014, former Treasury Secretary Jim Flaherty received a state funeral after his death.


Crispin Sorhaindo, former President of Dominica, was buried in Roseau on January 18, 2010.


On November 16, 2016, the state funeral of the former President of Ecuador, Sixto Durán Ballén, took place in Quito.


On March 16, 2012, a state funeral for former Grenadian Prime Minister George Ignatius Brizan was held in St. George's.


The legendary reggae singer Bob Marley received a state funeral in Jamaica on May 21, 1981, at which elements of Ethiopian orthodoxy and the Rastafarian tradition were combined.

On July 18, 2004, a state funeral for former Jamaican Prime Minister Hugh Shearer was held in Kingston.

On June 23, 2019, a state funeral for former Jamaican Prime Minister Edward Philip George Seaga was held in Kingston. He was the fifth Prime Minister of Jamaica from 1980 to 1989 and chairman of the Jamaica Labor Party from 1974 to 2005.


The novelist Carlos Fuentes received a state funeral on May 16, 2012, during which his funeral procession briefly stopped traffic in Mexico City. The ceremony took place in the Palacio de Bellas Artes and was attended by President Felipe Calderón.

State funerals were also held for former Mexican presidents. Traditionally, the last funeral service for a former Mexican President takes place either in the Metropolitan Cathedral in Mexico City or in the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The services are attended by the family of the former president, the current president of Mexico, the head of government of Mexico City and their families, foreign heads of state or their representatives (usually a foreign ambassador, vice president, prime minister, or prime minister), as well as military officials , Senators and MPs and other dignitaries. The main celebrant of the service is usually the Archbishop of Mexico City, and traditionally both the President and Prime Minister of Mexico City deliver the final eulogies and remarks.

On the days leading up to a president's funeral, the Mexican flags are at half mast and the Olympic cauldron in the Estadio Olimpico Universitario will glow until the end of the memorial service when it is cleared. The day of the president's funeral in Mexico City is usually the national day of mourning. There is no mail to be delivered on that day, all schools and universities in Mexico City are closed, and all television and film studios in Mexico City and with them the studios of Televisa, TV Azteca, Imagen Televisión and Multimedios Televisión within the capital and its subsidiaries throughout Mexico, along with those of the state-run Canal Catorce and Canal del Congreso, and the public television channels Channel 11, TV UNAM and Educational Television of Mexico, are closed to the public and touring. All businesses in Mexico City, including shopping malls and entertainment venues, are closed during the day. Shops and theaters that are part of regional and national retail and theater companies headquartered in Mexico City are also closed nationwide.

The President's last funeral was that of Miguel de la Madrid, which was attended by thousands of dignitaries, including President Calderon and Federal District Prime Minister Marcelo Ebrard.

St. Lucia

Sir William George Mallet GCSL GCMG CBE (July 24, 1923 - October 20, 2010) received a state funeral in the capital, Castries, on October 28, 2010. Mallet was a politician who held a number of high offices in St. Lucia, one of the Windward Islands in the Lesser Antilles in the eastern Caribbean. On June 1, 1996 "Sir George" was appointed to the office of Governor General of St. Lucia.

The Bahamas

On September 4, 2000, a state funeral of the former Bahamian Prime Minister Sir Lynden Pindling took place in Nassau. On January 5, 2012, a state funeral for the former Bahamian Governor General Sir Clifford Darling was held in Nassau.

United States

In the United States, state burials are held in the capital, Washington, DC, and include military spectacle, ceremonial pomp, and religious observance. As the highest possible honor bestowed on an individual posthumously, state funerals are an entitlement offered to a seated or former President of the United States, an elected President, and other persons appointed by the President. State funerals administered by the Washington Military District (MDW) are heavily influenced by protocol, steeped in tradition, and rich in history. However, the overall planning, as well as the decision to hold a state funeral, is largely determined by the President before his death and the First Family.

State funerals were held in Washington DC for William Henry Harrison (1841), Zachary Taylor (1850), Abraham Lincoln (1865), Thaddeus Stevens (1868), James A. Garfield (1881), William McKinley (1901), and Warren G. Harding (1923), The Unknown Soldier of World War I (1921), William Howard Taft (1930), John J. Pershing (1948), The Unknown Soldier of World War II and the Korean War (1958), John F. Kennedy (1963), Douglas MacArthur (1964), Herbert Hoover (1964), Dwight D. Eisenhower (1969), Lyndon B. Johnson (1973), Ronald Reagan (2004), Gerald Ford (2006-2007), George HW Bush (2018) and Ruth Bader Ginsburg (2020).

The first woman who was in the state capitol in 2020 was Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Asia and Oceania


In Australia, Commonwealth State funerals are generally offered to former or current Governors General, Prime Ministers, and senior members of the Australian Parliament. On rare occasions, a Commonwealth State funeral is offered to people outside of politics who have, however, made significant contributions to the nation. For example, Sir Douglas Mawson was granted a Commonwealth State funeral in 1958. A Commonwealth State funeral was offered for Margaret Whitlam, but the Whitlam family refused. Steve Irwin was offered a state funeral after his death in 2006, but his family declined and opted for a private ceremony.

State military burials are offered to former senior officers in the Australian Defense Forces, such as Field Marshal Sir Thomas Blamey, and sometimes to Governors General, Prime Ministers, State Governors and Prime Ministers who have previously served in the military. The unknown soldier was buried in the Commonwealth military on November 11, 1993 before being buried in the Hall of Memory at the Australian War Memorial. In the early years of the 21st century, the last of World War I veterans were offered state military burials.

New South Wales

State funerals in NSW have been governed by a policy that has been in place since 1966. A state funeral is usually offered to governors, chief judges, prime ministers, and long-term ministers. However, the NSW Prime Minister can offer such a service to those who are determined to be respected citizens of NSW. For example, soccer player Johnny Warren received a state funeral in NSW. If the family of the deceased does not want a state funeral, the offer of a state memorial service will be considered.

Some former governors who had previously served in the military received state military burials, such as Rear Admiral Sir David Martin and Air Marshal Sir James Rowland.

On November 27, 2007, Bernie Banton, an asbestos campaigner who worked for James Hardie, lost his battle against mesothelioma, an asbestos-related disease. His family was offered a state funeral by NSW Prime Minister Morris Iemma.


Current and former governors, premiers, deputy premieres, Legislative Assembly speakers, chief judges of the Supreme Court, President of the Court of Appeal, and current members of the Executive Board are automatically eligible for a state funeral. It is the Prime Minister of the Day's prerogative to offer a state funeral to other prominent Queenslanders. In September 2006, a state funeral was offered for TV star Steve Irwin, but his family declined the offer.


State funerals are usually offered to former governors, prime ministers, and other senior officials. A state funeral may be offered to other prominent Victorians at the Prime Minister's discretion, such as broadcaster Peter Evans (1985), Australian football player Ted Whitten (1995), racing driver Peter Brock (2006) and actor Charles'. Bud 'Tingwell (2009) and former Australian football player and charity worker Jim Stynes ​​(2012). The explorers Robert O'Hara Burke and William John Wills received Victoria's first (and Australia's first) state funeral on January 21, 1863.

South Australia

State funerals are typically offered to former governors, prime ministers, deputy prime ministers, House of Assembly speakers, chief judges, and other senior officials.

Western Australia

The offer of a state funeral is a cabinet decision.


State funerals are commonly offered at past governors, premiers, deputy premiers, speakers of the House of Assembly, chief judges, and other senior officials.

Australian capital territory

The offer of a state funeral is at the discretion of the Prime Minister. People who have received state funerals include former Prime Minister Trevor Kaine, Supreme Court Justice Terry Connolly, and former Canberra Commercial Development Authority chairman Jim Pead.


The coffin with the body of the Heydar Aliyev Palace of the Republic

A state funeral was held for President Heydar Aliyev in 2003. Former President Abulfaz Elchibey also received a state funeral after his death.


Cambodia hosted state funerals for the following people:

Republic of China

According to the Act of State Funeral (1948), state burials are declared after a majority decision in the Legislative Yuan by order of the President. The national flag is hoisted at half mast on the day of the state burial.

State funerals (or equivalent) have been arranged for:

From the Parliament of the Republic of China
From the cantonal military government
From the Nanking Nationalist Government
From the Government of the Republic of China (Taiwan)

Hong Kong

British Hong Kong

Before 1997, Edward Youde was buried in British Hong Kong for the first time in 1986 in Hong Kong. The coffin was carried by ten Union flag guardsmen and a 17 cannon salute from HMS Tamar (Coast Station) was fired. The funeral was exceptionally well attended.

Hong Kong after 1997

Since 1997, only three people in Hong Kong have been allowed to hang the flag of the People's Republic of China on their coffins during their funeral:

  • Mr. Ann Tse-kai (2000) - Hong Kong - Former Legislative Council, Hong Kong Executive Council, Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, Fundamental Rights Committee, Hong Kong Affairs Adviser
  • Wong Ker-lee (2004) - Hong Kong businessman, founder of Winco Paper Products
  • Henry Fok Ying-tung (2006) - Beijing and Hong Kong; Hong Kong businessman

SAR-flagged funerals are not considered state funerals in Hong Kong.

The government offers funerals for fallen uniform service members. Flags of the respective service or the SAR flag can be used on the coffin. The Hong Kong Police Band can lead the procession to the final resting place in Gallant Garden, a cemetery reserved for duty officers, as part of the funeral ceremony and escort by the Hong Kong Police.


In India, state burials were initially only reserved for current and former presidents, prime ministers, union ministers and heads of state. And the decision to grant a state funeral was initially made by the trade union government. However, the laws were changed so that the state government can now decide who receives a state burial, depending on the stature of the deceased. If the union government has decided on a state funeral, the following procedures will be used across India. If the state government has declared a state funeral, this only applies to the state.

The government takes into account the individual's contribution to the state in various fields such as politics, literature, law, science, and the arts. The prime minister of the state concerned makes a decision after consulting other cabinet ministers. Once a decision is made on the matter, it will be passed on to senior police officers, including the Deputy Commissioner, Police Commissioner and Police Superintendent, who must all make arrangements for a state funeral.

During a state funeral,

  • A state mourning or a national day of mourning is officially declared.
  • The national flag is hoisted at half mast according to the Flag Code of India. This decision rests solely with the Indian President, who also determines the period for which the flag should be hoisted at half mast.
  • A holiday is declared.
  • The beers or coffin of the deceased is draped with the national flag with saffron towards the head of the beers or coffin while lying in the state. The flag may not be lowered into the grave or burned at the stake.
  • He / she is honored with a gun salute when he / she is buried or cremated.

State funerals were organized for the following people (listed by category, roughly according to their position in the Indian ranking):

President of India (died in office)
Vice President of India (died in office)
Prime Minister of India (died in office)
Former Presidents of India
Former Indian Prime Minister
Cabinet Minister of India (died in office)
Former Indian Cabinet Minister
Chief Ministers of India (died in office)
  • Gopinath Bordoloi, Prime Minister of Assam (1950)
  • Ravishankar Shukla, Prime Minister of Madhya Pradesh (1956)
  • Sri Krishna Singh, Prime Minister of Bihar (1961)
  • Bidhan Chandra Roy, Prime Minister of West Bengal (1962)
  • Marotrao Kannamwar, Prime Minister of Maharastra (1963)
  • Balwantrai Mehta, Prime Minister of Gujarat (1965)
  • CN Annadurai, Prime Minister of Tamil Nadu (1969)
  • Dayanand Bandodkar, Prime Minister of Goa (1973)
  • Barkatullah Khan, Prime Minister of Rajasthan (1973)
  • Sheikh Abdullah, Prime Minister of Jammu and Kashmir (1982)
  • MG Ramachandran, Prime Minister of Tamil Nadu (1987)
  • Chimanbhai Patel, Prime Minister of Gujarat (1994)
  • Beant Singh, Prime Minister of Punjab (1995)
  • YS Rajasekhara Reddy, Prime Minister of Andhra Pradesh (2009)
  • Dorjee Khandu, Prime Minister of Arunachal Pradesh (2011)
  • Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, Prime Minister of Jammu and Kashmir (State) (2016)
  • J. Jayalalithaa, Prime Minister of Tamil Nadu (2016)
  • Manohar Parrikar, Prime Minister of Goa (2019)
Former Prime Minister of India
  • PS Kumaraswamy Raja, former Prime Minister of Tamil Nadu (1957)
  • Tanguturi Prakasam, former Prime Minister of Tamil Nadu (1957)
  • OP Ramaswamy Reddiyar, former Prime Minister of Tamil Nadu (1970)
  • C. Rajagopalachari, former Prime Minister of Tamil Nadu (1972)
  • K. Kamaraj, former Prime Minister of Tamil Nadu (1975)
  • M. Bhaktavatsalam, former Prime Minister of Tamil Nadu (1987)
  • NT Rama Rao, former Prime Minister of Andhra Pradesh (1996)
  • EK Mawlong, former Prime Minister of Meghalaya (2008)
  • Jyoti Basu, former Prime Minister of West Bengal (2010)
  • M. Karunanidhi, former Prime Minister of Tamil Nadu (2018)
  • ND Tiwari, former Prime Minister of Uttarakhand (2018)
  • Madan Lal Khurana, former Prime Minister of Delhi (2018)
  • Sheila Dikshit, former Prime Minister of Delhi (2019)
  • Sushma Swaraj, former Prime Minister of Delhi (2019)
  • Jagannath Mishra, former Prime Minister of Bihar (2019)
  • Babulal Gaur, former Prime Minister of Madhya Pradesh (2019)
  • Tarun Gogoi, former Prime Minister of Assam (2020)
Former Chief Justice of India
Owner of the Bharat Ratna
Former Minister of State
Former Chiefs of Staff of the Indian Armed Forces
Former ministers in states

Other personalities who received a state funeral:

In the event of the death of the head of state or government of a foreign country, the Indian mission accredited in that country can hoist the national flag at half mast. In the case of Pope John Paul II. India declared a three day official mourning period.