Throughout the day the presidential palace in Buenos Aires was the focus of grief. Expressing their compassion Argentinians urged the bereaved President Cristina Fernandez, to be strong.
“Don’t abandon us, please. Don’t leave us Cristina,”
cried one woman, holding a home-made written message of support.
Kirchner’s body is expected to lie in state so that people can pay their final respects.
“A comrade has gone. A friend has gone. A statesman has gone. A man that understood the needs of the people,” said supporter Saul Perez.
But, as three days of national mourning were declared, not everyone shared that opinion of Kirchner’s political record.
“I really could not abide the policies he was carrying out, so right now I have mixed feelings,” said a man who only identified himself as Raul.
“I feel bad for his family but I think he was hurting the country.”
Kirchner had been widely tipped to run for the presidency again in 2011.
“I don’t know what is going to happen. He was the candidate we had. We hope it will give the president more strength and she will serve another term,” said construction worker Javier Valenzuela.
Initial outward signs of mourning were relatively muted, on a day Argentinians were required to stay at home to be registered in a national census.