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Thousands of police officers took to New York’s Fifth Avenue on Friday to bid farewell to their colleague Jason Rivera, killed at the age of 22 in a shooting last week that also killed another colleague and the assailant who shot them both.
The police officers were mostly from the New York Police Department, but they were joined by colleagues from neighboring cities, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the Police Academy and even the Rangers.
Those who could, entered St. Patrick’s Cathedral for the funeral of Jason Rivera — who will later be cremated — a ceremony presided over by the Archbishop of New York, Cardinal Timothy Dolan.
But there were thousands who remained outside for more than two hours on Fifth Avenue, under a fine snow that fell on New York throughout the morning.
In anticipation of the crowds, the authorities shut down traffic on Fifth Avenue for at least ten blocks, where the cathedral’s prayers could be heard over a public loudspeaker system that was in operation across several blocks.
Mayor Eric Adams — himself a former NYPD officer — presided over the farewell funeral for Rivera, who like his also-dead partner, Wilbert Mora, was Dominican, and the Police Twitter account has been streaming the funeral live.
Adams became mayor on January 1 after a campaign in which the reinforcement of security was one of his pillars, and as soon as the death of the two agents was known, he asked for help from the federal government in Washington to curb crime in New York.