GOLFING legend Severiano Ballestero's funeral was held today in his home town of Pedreña (Cantabria) after he lost his life in the early hours of Saturday morning at just 54 years of age.
Seve's three children, Miguel, Javier and Carmen, along with around 2,000 other family members, friends, international sportspeople and his old Ryder Cup colleagues attended the ceremony.
Given that those attending the cremation and mass outnumbered the population of the village, large screens were set up inside and outside the church for those who could not get a seat.
The congregation included Seve's ex-wife, Carmen Botín, with her sisters Paloma and Ana Patricia, and her mother Paloma O'Shea, plus the president of the Olympic Committee for Spain, Alejandro Blanco, the Cantabrian regional president, Miguel Ángel Revilla, and Secretary of State for Sports, Albert Soler.
A Scottish bagpipe-player in a kilt and full costume serenaded the late golfing champion, a tribute to his strong links with the UK, where he was a huge idol.
Seve, who lost his fight against cancer after being diagnosed with a malignant brain tumour two-and-a-half years ago, founded the prestigious Oliva Nova golf course in the town of Oliva (Valencia).
Seve's brother, Baldomero Ballesteros, has called for the Ryder Cup to be staged in Spain in 2018 in memory of the late sporting hero.