NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Family and friends said a final farewell Saturday to a man and his granddaughter, who were struck and killed by a car in the Bronx on Halloween night.FBI: Suspect Killed During Kidnapping Investigation At Leonia Apartment Complex
“My emotions are a little heavy today,” Nyanna’s mother, Nitalia Perez-Aquil, told CBS2’s Ilana Gold. “I just want peace for my daughter and my father at the end of this.”
Dozens in the community paid their respects to Nyanna and her grandfather Saturday. After the service ended, many walked out in tears.
“This is a tragedy for my entire family the whole community is devastated,” said Perez-Aquil.
Ashley McKenzie is struggling to cope with the death of her best friend Nyanna.
“It’s hard for me to know that my best friend is gone,” she said. “Nyanna was a great person. She was smart, intelligent, funny and creative.”
Nyanna and her grandfather were killed on Halloween while trick-or-treating in the Morris Park section of the Bronx when police said a car lost control, jumping the curb and slamming into a crowd of pedestrians.READ MORE: De Blasio Says It's Time To Move Homeless People Out Of Hotels, Back Into Shelters
Perez’s brother Qadir Perez said the World War II veteran and Purple Heart recipient wanted nothing more than to please his grandchildren.
Family members said he was also with Nyanna’s two sisters that night and pushed them out of the way so they didn’t get hit.
“He was a grandfather of all grandfathers,” said Qadir Perez. “I took a page out of his book.”
Their loved ones are trying to understand how something like this could happen and looking for strength to move forward without them.
“We’re going to be OK, we’re going to get through this,” said said Perez-Aquil. “We’re going to fight through this.”
Also killed in the crash was 24-year-old Kristian Leka. His funeral was held earlier this week.MORE NEWS: Child Tax Credit: How Much Will You Get Each Month?
Police said the driver may have suffered a seizure before the crash.