NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — The wife and two sons of a New York City policeman gunned down along with his partner have been joined by hundreds of uniformed officers at his wake.
The family of Officer Rafael Ramos and officers streamed into the Christ Tabernacle Church in Queens on Friday, less than a week after the Dec. 20 killings.
PHOTOS: Wake For Officer Rafael Ramos
The wake began soon after Ramos’ flag-draped casket was carried into the church on the shoulders of six uniformed officers. Fellow officers saluted as the casket passed.
As CBS2’s Jessica Schneider reported, Mayor Bill de Blasio and Governor Andrew Cuomo were among those who gathered at the Friday wake.
“Today we weep with the Ramos family, the New York City Police Department and our nation as we mourn the loss of our dear brother,” Pastor Ralph Castillo said before the start of the wake. “We loved Rafael Ramos. We loved the way he served people, we loved his faithfulness and the way he served people, and we’re going to miss him a great deal.”
As CBS2’s Sonia Rincon reported, the line went for blocks as New Yorkers gathered to pay their respects. Several giant video screens were being set up for the event.
Justin Ramos was in the middle of his sophomore year at Bowdoin College in Maine when his father was murdered. His image was broadcast for thousands waiting on line as he spoke about the man his father was.
“My dad would have been there for everyone and to see so many people here for him is a testament to who he is as a person. It has been so helpful during this time,” Justin said.
One of those people was Damarize Ruiz.
“He wasn’t just an officer that we lost. He was a good husband, a great dad, and also a Christian brother and we’re going to miss him dearly in this church,” Ruiz said.