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Mourners gather for Joe Paterno memorial service

10:13 PM, Feb 15, 2012   |    comments
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Joe Paterno (Photo courtesy: Getty Images Sport)

Harrisburg, PA (WGAL/CNN) - Hundreds of mourners gathered for a memorial service in honor of former Penn State football coach Joe Paterno.

The public mass was held Wednesday at Saint Patrick Cathedral in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

Paterno died last month after a brief battle with lung cancer.

The winningest coach in major college football was fired in November for his handling of child sex abuse allegations against a former assistant coach.

Paterno's son said his dad's dismissal after years of dedication to Penn State nearly left him bitter.

"I'm ashamed to admit, but man enough to acknowledge I lost my faith for a time over the past three months. When all the storms seemed focused on my parents, two people who lived amazing lives, I gave in to self pity and anger and questioned how it could be so if God is truly just, but then I witnessed things that could only be possible through grace and that restored my faith. I watched my father live every day he had left without malice in his heart or bitterness on his lips," said his son, Scott Paterno.

The memorial was organized by Penn State alumni and friends of Paterno.

It was meant to give people who couldn't attend the State College memorials an opportunity to honor his life.

WGAL/CNN

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