Thousands of New York police officers turned Fifth Avenue into a sea of navy blue Wednesday as they bade farewell to the second of two colleagues recently shot dead.
Officer Wilbert Mora, 27, died last week from injuries sustained while responding to a domestic disturbance in Harlem on January 21.
Advertisements - Click the Speaker Icon for Audio
His police partner Jason Rivera, 22, was also killed and was laid to rest on Friday.
New York Police Department personnel, former cops and politicians — including city Mayor Eric Adams — gathered at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in Manhattan for Mora’s funeral service that was held in both English and Spanish.
Relatives and colleagues remembered a “gentle giant” who moved to the United States from the Dominican Republic when he was seven years old.
“He lit up the house with his smile and this light has been put out, with pain, forever,” said his sister Karina Mora.
An organist played “God Bless America” to close the ceremony, and the blaring of bagpipes filled the streets outside the cathedral, as is traditional in New York police funerals. A procession of helicopters flew overhead.
The city’s police commissioner, Keechant Sewell, gave Mora a posthumous promotion to the highest rank for a detective, first-grade, a traditional promotion for officers killed while working.
The shooting was the latest flashpoint in Democratic mayor Adam’s nascent rule, and it prompted him to release a new plan to rein in the crime he has long decried.
“We will win this fight. We will win it together,” the mayor said, delivering a eulogy for Mora.
President Joe Biden is scheduled to visit New York on Thursday to discuss with Adams strategies for combating gun crime.