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Celebrities among those influenced by the late Rev. Graham

Many well-known figures -- from musician Ricky Skaggs to televangelist Joel Osteen to TV host Kathie Lee Gifford -- flew in for the service. (Photo credit: WLOS staff)

Thousands traveled to Charlotte on Friday to say their final farewell to the Rev. Billy Graham. The funeral was held where he started his simple beginnings ... under a tent.

Many well-known figures -- from musician Ricky Skaggs to televangelist Joel Osteen to TV host Kathie Lee Gifford -- flew in for the service.

Graham's humility and larger-than-life persona as a man who felt his calling was to spread the word of God helped make him "America's Pastor."

Skaggs said Graham's gift was bringing encouragement to many losing hope.

Osteen called Graham a pioneer and remembered his grace.

"He wanted to encourage us when we met with him," Osteen said. "What he did back in those days made it easier for people like me to be on television."

Gifford, who sang at Graham's 95th birthday, said he had a deep influence on her faith.

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