Benedict XVI’s body viewed by over 60,000 people at the Vatican on first day of viewing

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI passed away over the weekend at age 95.
Sergio Mattarella and Giorgia Meloni pay respects to Pope Benedict

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI's body rested in St. Peter's Basilica in Italy on Monday as tens of thousands of people gathered to pay their respects. 

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI passed away over the weekend at age 95. 

Right after 9 a.m. (0800 GMT), the doors of the basilica were opened to the public, some of whom had waited for hours to pay their respects. Monday was the first of three days of viewing, for which the security officials expected a crowd of at least 25,000-30,000 people, but by the end of the first day an estimated 65,000 had passed by the bier to view Benedict. 

Benedict was the first pontiff to have retired from the papacy in 600 years when he did so in 2013, according to the Associated Press

Filippo Tuccio, a 35-year-old from Venice, arrived on an overnight train to view Benedict's body. "I wanted to pay homage to Benedict because he had a key role in my life and my education," Tuccio told the AP.

Tuccio said that he studied theology and Benedict had been a major influence in his studies. 

"He was very important for me: for what I am, my way of thinking, my values," Tuccio continued.