NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The community of Glendale in Queens has prepared all week for the funeral of NYPD Officer Rafael Ramos, and many residents have been showing their support for the murdered cop.
“It’s been very sad. It’s been emotional,” said Teresa Kranacher. “When he would look at you and smile, you had to smile back; it was infectious, his smile.”
Photos: Officer Ramos Laid To Rest
Kranacher, a waitress at Tasty Diner on Myrtle Avenue, told CBS2’s Ilana Gold she served Ramos and his family every Sunday after church for many years.
She said Ramos had stopped at the diner just days before he was killed.
“It was from what we believe was his birthday,” Kranacher said. “We were teasing around his younger son. We asked him why he was home, he said it was because of his father’s birthday.”
People in the Glendale community and neighboring towns continue to show up at Christ Tabernacle Church to light candles and say a prayer.
“I walked up there yesterday and it was very heartfelt,” said Ridgewood resident Joe Haufe.
Haufe said he never met Ramos, but wanted to pay his respects.
“People are hurting,” he said.
It’s also a hurtful time for parishioners at Christ Tabernacle Church, where Ramos’ family attends Mass.
“We loved Rafael Ramos. He was a gift to our church,” said Pastor Ralph Castillo. “We loved his faithfulness and the way that he served people, and we’re going to miss him a great deal.”
Parishioners said Ramos left quite an impression on the congregation. They described him as a fixture there, working with the ushers ministry.
“He was the best guy, the best guy in the world,” said Nazario.
Ramos’ friends told Gold he had aspirations to be a pastor, and was training to become a police chaplain.
“He was loved, he was loved. It’s like losing your brother,” Nazario said.
A loss that’s left them devastated as they prepare to say one last goodbye.
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