By Childs Walker
The Baltimore Sun
3:45 PM EDT, September 8, 2012
Hundreds of Ravens fans started lining up as early 6 a.m. outside M&T Bank Stadium to pay their last respects to former owner Art Modell.
Mourners and fans lined up by his flag-draped casket, shook hands with his sons, John and David Modell, and touched the Vince Lombardi Trophy, which sat beside his coffin. Frank Sinatra tunes play in the background as the service continues under a canopy at the 50 yard line.
John Ryan of Aberdeen was the first in line at 6 a.m.
"I think it was awfully nice of his family to have this for the public," Ryan said. "I never thought football was ever going to come back to Baltimore, but he brought it back here as a gentleman."
The silent viewing and fan tribute, hosted by the Ravens, began at 11 a.m. and will continue until 1 p.m.
Free parking is available to fans in Lots B and C with fans asked to enter the stadium through Lot A via Unitas Plaza.
Modell, the former majority owner of the Ravens and Cleveland Browns, died at age 87 at 4 a.m. at Johns Hopkins Hospital on Thursday morning.
The line entering the stadium never lagged in more than two hours, and Ravens officials estimated that 3,000 people attended the memorial.
After Modell's son, David, shook the last hand at 1:27 p.m., he said: "Wow. I've had some incredible days in this building. But how does one describe what happened here today? It's unbelievable how much love this community had for my father."
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