Basque government mourns Cenarrusa; official to attend Idaho services

October 1, 2013 

Lehendakari Iñigo Urkullu, the Basque president, expressed "great sorrow" at the passing of former Idaho Secretary of State Pete Cenarrusa, whose parents immigrated from Spain to Idaho early in the 20th century.

In a news release, the autonomous government called Cenarrusa a "great friend and tireless supporter of the Basque Country and of the Basque people in the United States."

Cenarrusa spent decades pressing U.S. officials to support Basque language, culture and political autonomy, as well as peace talks between ETA and the Spanish government and a referendum on independence.

Ander Caballero, the delegate of the Basque Country in the U.S., will be in Boise on Thursday and Friday to attend services for Cenarrusa, who died Sunday at age 95.

The celebration of Cenarrusa's life, which included three terms as speaker of the Idaho House, begins Wednesday at Summers Funeral Home in Boise, 1205 W. Bannock St. The public may pay their respects from noon to 6 p.m.

On Thursday, Cenarrusa will lie in state at the Capitol, from noon to 7 p.m. At 7:30 p.m., a vigil will be held at St. John's Cathedral, 775 N. 8th St. in Boise.

At 10 a.m. Friday, the Rev. Thomas Faucher will preside at a funeral service at St. John's. A reception will follow at the Basque Center, at 6th and Grove streets Downtown.

Cenarussa will be buried at 11 a.m. Saturday at Bellevue Cemetery.

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