Jewish-American billionaire Sheldon Adelson was buried Friday in a small funeral on the Mount of Olives, overlooking Jerusalem’s Old City, with only close family present.
Jewish families have buried their dead on the Mount of Olives since time immemorial, with an estimated 150,000 people interred there. In 2012, the authorities who run the cemetery said there is barely any room left.
The coffin carrying the pro-Israel and GOP megadonor arrived in Israel Thursday evening.
It was draped in US and Israeli flags and was on display at Ben Gurion Airport, where Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Adelson’s wife, Miriam, and other family members paid their respects.
“He will be remembered as a great Jewish patriot, this is a great loss for the Jewish people,” Netanyahu was quoted as saying by the Israel Hayom free daily, which Adelson controlled and operated with his wife, the paper’s publisher.
Adelson, who owned the Las Vegas Sands gambling empire, died from complications related to treatment for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, Sands and his wife announced Tuesday.