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Obama and Biden to attend Byrd's memorial service

By the CNN Wire Staff

(CNN) -- President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden will attend Sen. Robert Byrd's memorial service in Charleston, West Virginia, on Friday, the White House stated in a press release Tuesday.

Byrd, the longest-serving member of the U.S. Congress, died Monday at 92 years old. Byrd served for six years in the House before moving to the Senate, where he served nine terms.

Biden shared the Senate floor with Byrd for 36 years as a senator from Delaware from 1973 to 2009.

At an event on Monday, Biden said Byrd was "a very close friend of mine, one of my mentors -- a guy who was there when I was a 29-year-old kid being sworn into the United States Senate. Shortly thereafter -- [he was] a guy who stood in the rain, in a pouring rain, freezing rain outside a church as I buried my daughter and my wife before I got sworn in."

Obama also served with Byrd in the Senate. He described Byrd as "uniquely American" and said he was "as much a part of the Senate as the marble busts that line its chamber and its corridors" in a statement issued Monday.

Byrd's body will lie in repose in the U.S. Senate chamber during the day Thursday, according to two Senate aides familiar with the plans. His body will lie in repose at the West Virginia state Capitol overnight Thursday. West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin's office invited the public to pay their respects.

"A public, formal memorial service will also take place [at] 11:30 a.m. Friday at the state Capitol's North Plaza," said the statement from the governor's office.

The governor will appoint a successor to Byrd who will serve until voters choose a successor in the November 2012 election.