Life of abducted Minnesota boy Jacob Wetterling, 11, celebrated

The remains of Jacob Wetterling, who was abducted almost 27 years ago, was found last week. (Jacob Wetterling Resource Center)

The remains of Jacob Wetterling, who was abducted almost 27 years ago, was found last week. (Jacob Wetterling Resource Center)

ST. JOSEPH, Minn. — Thousands have attended a public memorial service remembering 11-year-old Jacob Wetterling, the Minnesota boy whose abduction nearly 27 years ago was recently solved with the discovery of his remains.

While Jacob’s abduction in 1989 prompted new laws to protect children, he was remembered Sunday as a real boy who loved hockey and fishing.

The St. Cloud Times reports thousands filled Clemens Field House at the College of St. Benedict in Jacob’s hometown of St. Joseph. About 1,000 more watched from an overflow area.

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton and U.S. Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken were among those attending. The 75-minute service celebrated Jacob’s life with songs, prayers and memories while family photos were displayed on large screens.

The man who confessed to abducting and killing Jacob will be sentenced in November on a federal child pornography charge.