SIMI VALLEY, CA (CBSNewYork) — Thousands of people were expected to say their goodbyes to Nancy Reagan this week, as her casket lies in repose at the Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California.

As CBS2’s Danielle Nottingham reported, Wednesday marked the start of three days of mourning for the former First Lady.

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Nancy Reagan’s casket was carried into the library where her family held a private service before opening the doors to the public.

Tracy King-Reyes and her 73-year-old mother Elaine were among the first visitors in line.

“I just wanted to pay my respects to a great lady that did a lot for our community and for the United States,” Tracy said.

Earlier, a procession escorted the late Mrs. Reagan as she made her last journey across Los Angeles to her final resting place.

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Crowds were being shuttled to the library to view the casket with some lined up for hours before the public viewing to make sure they didn’t miss a moment in history.

“You want to be there when you can, to see it for yourself,” Elaine King said.

Many say Nancy’s greatest legacy is her devotion to former President Ronald Reagan.

“Even on the screen you could see this love they exuded for each other,” Elaine King said.

As in life, Nancy Reagan will forever be by her husband’s side. She will be buried just inches from him on Friday.

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First Lady Michelle Obama, former President George W. Bush, and former First Ladies Laura Bush, Rosalynn Carter, and Hillary Clinton will attend Mrs. Reagan’s private funeral.