Billy Graham: 'America's pastor'

Updated 1:03 PM ET, Wed February 21, 2018
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Evangelist Billy Graham, who reached millions of people through his Christian rallies and developed a relationship with every US president since Harry Truman, died Wednesday, February 21, at the age of 99. Shannon Stapleton/Reuters/Landov
A school portrait of Graham, age 17, in 1935. After high school, Graham moved from Charlotte, North Carolina, to Tennessee to enroll in the conservative Christian school Bob Jones College. He then transferred to the Florida Bible Institute. He was ordained a Southern Baptist minister in 1939 and quickly gained a reputation as an evangelical preacher. AP
Graham preaches in the early 1950s. He said he became "born again" after hearing an evangelist at a tent meeting in 1934. Hulton Archive/Getty Images
Graham reads on an airplane during a "Pulpit in the Sky" trip in 1953. Commercial Appeal/Landov
Graham addresses a crowd in London's Trafalgar Square in 1954. Graham's London crusade lasted 12 weeks and drew huge crowds. Fred Ramage/Getty Images
Graham speaks to soccer fans in London during halftime of a match between Chelsea and Newcastle United. Edward Miller/Getty Images
In the 1950s, Graham began a weekly Sunday night radio program, "The Hour of Decision." Ed Clark/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images
Graham embraces his family upon his return from his "Crusade for Christ" tour in the 1950s. With him from left are his wife, Ruth, and his daughters Anne, Virginia and Ruth (Bunny). Hulton Archive/Getty Images
In 1957, Graham's crusade at New York's Madison Square Garden ran nightly for 16 weeks. Gjon Mili/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images
US President Dwight D. Eisenhower visits with Graham at the White House in 1957. Paul Schutzer/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images
Supporters greet Graham upon his arrival in New York in 1959. Graham and his wife were returning from a six-month speaking tour that included stops in Australia and the Soviet Union. Anthony Camerone/AP
In 1960, Graham explains the Bible to Waarusha warriors in Tanzania. James Burke/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images
Graham visits with children during a trip to Ghana in 1960. AP
Graham sits in a jungle clearing a few miles from Ibadan, Nigeria, in 1960. DENNIS LEE ROYLE/AP
Graham sits with US President John F. Kennedy. Abbie Rowe/PhotoQuest/Getty Images
Graham gets a kiss from his wife, Ruth, after they returned to the United States following a tour in Africa and the Middle East. JACOB HARRIS/AP
Graham preached that racial segregation was unbiblical, but some civil rights rights leaders criticized him for not being more involved in the civil rights movement. Graham asked the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. to deliver a prayer at a Madison Square Garden crusade in New York in 1957.
Graham dictates a synopsis of his evening sermon into a tape recorder in 1962. Secretaries would then type the synopsis for distribution to the press. Graham was conducting an eight-day crusade in Fresno, California. AP
Graham appears in the 1963 documentary "The World's Greatest Showman: The Legend of Cecil B. DeMille." NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images
Graham addresses the congregation at the opening of a 32-day London crusade in 1966. Hulton Archive/Getty Images
Graham speaks to more than 5,000 US troops in Vietnam in 1966. AP
Graham addresses an audience in 1967. He was frequently listed by Gallup as one of the "Ten Most Admired Men in the World." AP
Graham is flanked by US President Richard Nixon, left, and Vice President Spiro Agnew as they bow their heads in prayer in 1969. Graham was speaking at Nixon's inauguration. Charles H. Phillips/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Image
Graham rides a donkey in Jerusalem while visiting the city in 1969. AP
Graham speaks to a crowd of 18,000 on the closing night of the Southern Baptist Convention in 1974. AP
Graham speaks at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium in Memphis, Tennessee, in 1978. Inclement weather had forced the crusade to the nearby Mid-South Coliseum, but when the clouds lifted, Graham went to the stadium to speak to those who could not get into the smaller indoor arena. Commercial Appeal/Landov
Graham and his wife visit her birthplace in Huaiyin, China, in 1988. They were married for 64 years until her death in 2007. JOHN GIANNINI/AFP/Getty Images
Graham takes a boat ride with US President George H.W, Bush near Bush's summer home in Kennebunkport, Maine, in 1989. ap
Graham preaches in New York's Central Park in 1991. It was his first appearance in New York City since 1970. The crowd was estimated at 200,000. MARIA BASTONE/AFP/Getty Images
Graham stands next to singer Johnny Cash in New York's Central Park. ANDREW HOLBROOKE/Corbis via Getty Images
Pope John Paul II meets with Graham at the Vatican in 1993. Graham had often been called the "Protestant Pope." RNS/Landov
In 1996, House Speaker Newt Gingrich presents Graham with a Congressional Gold Medal during a ceremony on Capitol Hill. AFP/Getty Images
Graham gestures as he speaks to a capacity crowd at Ericsson Stadium in Charlotte, North Carolina, in 1996. Kent Phillips/Commercial Appeal/Landov
In 1997, Graham gave the invocation at the second inauguration of President Bill Clinton. LUKE FRAZZA/AFP/Getty Images
Graham greets Chinese President Jiang Zemin at a California luncheon in 1997. KEVORK DJANSEZIAN/AFP/Getty Images
Former first lady Nancy Reagan greets Graham at the gala dedication of the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center. TIM SLOAN/AFP/Getty Images
Presidential candidate George W. Bush meets with Graham in Jacksonville, Florida, in 2000. Years earlier, Bush said, a conversation with Graham had helped lead him to give up drinking. Eric Draper/AP
Graham speaks to a crowd at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri, in 2004. Over the course of his career, Graham preached to more than 215 million people in more than 185 countries and territories. Larry W. Smith/Getty Images
Graham leads his "last crusade" at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park in New York in 2005. He spoke to more than 230,000 people. Charles Ommanney/Getty Images
Graham sits in his mountain home in Montreat, North Carolina, in 2006. Charles Ommanney/Getty Images
Graham and his son Franklin attend the Metro Maryland Festival in 2006. The three-day program was led by Franklin. Alex Wong/Getty Images
US President Barack Obama meets with Graham at his Montreat home in 2010. Pete Souza/The White House/AP
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney speaks with Graham and his son Franklin during a visit to Montreat in 2012. JIM WATSON/AFP/GettyImages
Well-wishers gather with Graham at his 95th birthday celebration in 2013. Courtesy Billy Graham Evangelistic Association