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WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- Hundreds came to pay tribute to the late Nelson Mandela at a memorial service at the Washington National Cathedral Wednesday.

Vice President Joe Biden, other lawmakers, and entertainers came to the 3-hour service to remember Mandela.

Vice President Joe Biden said, "Nelson Mandela taught us that trust is possible, reconciliation is possible, justice is possible."

More than 1,500 came to honor the life, and legacy of Nelson Mandela.

South African Ambassador to US Ebrahim Rasool said, "Nelson Mandela's values are eternal in time, universal in space, enduring in every circumstance."

Lawmakers, actors activists and ordinary people who loved their Madiba, the father of South Africa paid their respects.

Arlene Holt-Baker said, "I came because I love Mandela and everything he stood for and I could not, not have been here."

Washington DC Mayor, Vince Gray said, "He may be gone in body but he will never be gone in spirit, principle and values. I hope everyone one of us will reflect on this service and see this as an opportunity to be better people ourselves."

Mandela spent his life fighting Apartheid and becoming the first black president of the country that sent him to prison for 27 years. He ended up forgiving the people who persecuted him.

Biden says, "I said to him, you must be so angry. He said no, no my jailors were only doing my job, they became my friends."

DC Shadow Senator Paul Strauss reflects on being a young college student protesting at the South African Embassy.

"Culminating in the arrest at the South African Embassy back in February 1985. Nelson Mandela inspired me then and he inspires me now toward a path of justice," saidStrauss.

Many who came here to pay tribute to Nelson Mandela say they want to carry on his legacy to fight for equality.

Arlene Holt-Baker said, "They were all speaking about the power of a man and his forgiveness and charging all of us to go forth if we are to carry out his memory to do it in the name of justice for all."

Rasool said, "Each one of us must continue the long walk."


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