Weekend of Paris tributes for late rock star Johnny Hallyday - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Weekend of Paris tributes for late rock star Johnny Hallyday

(AP Photo/Christophe Ena). Flowers brought by fans lay outside Johnny Hallyday's house in Marnes-la-Coquette, outside Paris, Thursday, Dec.7, 2017. Johnny Hallyday, France's biggest rock star for more than half a century and an icon who packed sports s... (AP Photo/Christophe Ena). Flowers brought by fans lay outside Johnny Hallyday's house in Marnes-la-Coquette, outside Paris, Thursday, Dec.7, 2017. Johnny Hallyday, France's biggest rock star for more than half a century and an icon who packed sports s...
(AP Photo/Francois Mori). French newspapers with portraits of late rock star Johnny Hallyday are displayed in a street news stand of Paris, France, Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017. Johnny Hallyday, France's biggest rock star for more than half a century and an ... (AP Photo/Francois Mori). French newspapers with portraits of late rock star Johnny Hallyday are displayed in a street news stand of Paris, France, Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017. Johnny Hallyday, France's biggest rock star for more than half a century and an ...
(AP Photo/Michel Euler). French fan Andre Duval holds a portrait of Johnny Hallyday outside his house in Marnes-la-Coquette, outside Paris, Wednesday, Dec.6, 2017. Johnny Hallyday, France's biggest rock star for more than half a century and an icon who... (AP Photo/Michel Euler). French fan Andre Duval holds a portrait of Johnny Hallyday outside his house in Marnes-la-Coquette, outside Paris, Wednesday, Dec.6, 2017. Johnny Hallyday, France's biggest rock star for more than half a century and an icon who...

By SYLVIE CORBET
Associated Press

PARIS (AP) - French President Emmanuel Macron and hundreds of thousands of fans are expected to pay tribute to the late French rock star Johnny Hallyday on Saturday as his funeral procession weaves through Paris.

Hallyday died Wednesday at age 74. The news has prompted a wave of emotion in France, where the singer, often described as the country's Elvis Presley, seduced generations of fans.

His funeral procession will start at the Arc de Triomphe monument in Paris and go down the city's grand Champs-Elysees Avenue. Up to 700 bikers will follow the coffin - since motorcycling was Hallyday's great passion.

The singer's band is expected to play some of his hits on a stage in front of the Madeleine Church, where a religious ceremony will follow. Macron plans to make a brief speech during the ceremony. Fans will be able to follow the ceremony on giant screens.

Paris police head Michel Delpuech told reporters he expects "hundreds of thousands of people" to attend the tribute. About 1,500 police officers will secure the area.

"Johnny showed deep affection for his public and his fans and I think it's important for people to be allowed to be close to the funeral procession," said Hallyday's manager, Sebastien Farran.

French radio RTL and the Le Parisien newspaper reported that Hallyday will be buried in the French Caribbean island of St. Barts where he owned a house.

Other tributes are planned. The words "Thank you Johnny" will be displayed on the Eiffel Tower over the weekend and all soccer stadiums hosting games in the top two divisions of the French league plan to play Hallyday's songs before kick-off.

The soccer league noted that Hallyday had "lit the fire" among fans in many of its stadiums.

___

Samuel Petrequin in Paris contributed to the story

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Powered by Frankly