Here is some background on Ferraro:
Her rise in politics was an American rags-to-riches story. The daughter of Italian immigrant parents, she lost her father at age 8, grew up in the South Bronx of New York City, worked her way through law school, became a prosecutor, ran for Congress and won, and then asked Americans to elect her as vice president.
Ferraro later served as U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Human Rights Commission.
Though she endured a harsh White House campaign and her ticket lost, she was remembered Saturday by her family and the nation's leaders for her high achievements as an indomitable and inspirational figure -- who wasn't afraid to speak her mind.
"America was changing," Mondale said of the 1980s. "The culture of our country had been very restrictive toward women, even women of great talent, by putting them in a box."
"She'll be remembered as a gutsy pioneer who stood up and fought for America to open its door to all Americans, including women," said Mondale, who served as vice president in Jimmy Carter's administration and, later, ambassador to Japan.
"Geraldine Anne Ferraro Zaccaro was widely known as a leader, a fighter for justice and a tireless advocate for those without a voice. To us, she was a wife, mother, grandmother and aunt, a woman devoted to and deeply loved by her family," her family's statement said. "Her courage and generosity of spirit throughout her life waging battles big and small, public and personal, will never be forgotten and will be sorely missed."