Watch CBS News

NYC Mourning NYPD Officers Wilbert Mora, Jason Rivera After Deadly Ambush In Harlem

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- New York City is preparing to say farewell to fallen heroes.

Funeral arrangements have been announced for police officer Wlibert Mora.

He died Tuesday, days after he and his partner Jason Rivera were shot in Harlem.

Wednesday morning, a procession escorted Mora's body to a funeral home.

As CBS2's Dave Carlin reports, there has been an outpouring of love, respect and grief. The streets were lined with officers, and salutes, tears and tributes stretched from Manhattan's 30th Street uptown to Inwood. The dignified transfer ceremony started at the medical examiner's office where, once again, the same NYPD ambulances were sadly pressed into service for use in the somber transports.

WATCH: Officer Mora's Body Moved From Medical Examiner To Funeral Home

Slain NYPD officer Mora was the focus of the dignified, emotional attention. The drive was accompanied by helicopters, boats, and observed by hundreds in NYPD, FDNY and state police uniforms on the sidelines.

During the arrival at the Riverdale Funeral Home, Mayor Eric Adams was shoulder-to-shoulder with officers. Later in the afternoon. he posted a photo on Twitter of the casket with the NYPD flag draped top.

"Wilbert Mora truly was New York's Finest and his death will not be in vain. To the men and women of the NYPD: I know the pain you and your families are feeling today," Adams wrote. "But I also know that your city is standing with you. And we always will."

The motorcade passed within a block of the home of the other fallen officer Jason Rivera. Both were ambushed Friday during a domestic disturbance.

The 22-year-old Rivera died the same night, while Mora, 27, was put on life support until Tuesday, allowing his heart, liver, pancreas, and kidneys to be recovered for transplant.

A relative of Mora's is among five recipients getting a gift of life from him.

At the funeral home, Adams was joined by Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell, and they spoke briefly to the grieving family members afterward.

"The murders of Officers Jason Rivera and Wilbert Mora leave us with broken hearts, flags at half staff, and black bands on our shields. THey were great officers doing an important job - work their fellow Finest continue in their honor," NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell wrote on Twitter. "Pray for them. Support them. And #NeverForget."

In front of a memorial at the 32nd police precinct stationhouse, residents spoke of heartbreak and vowed to never forget the two young heroes who gave their lives to save others.

"Very nice guy. He had a heart of gold," said Dr. Omid Nikrouz. "He was like a friend, not a patient, a friend or a small brother to me, and everyone loved him.

Nikrouz was Mora's longtime primary care physician. He sat with Mora in the hospital, and Mora's mother was with him when life support was removed.

"It's sad. Such a big guy, a hero, someone who cares about everyone, to be in that situation," Nikrouz said.

"New York Police Department officers Jason Rivera and Wilbert Mora are heroes, who paid the ultimate sacrifice. We are heartbroken that we lost them in the line of duty. We are praying for their loved ones and the entire NYPD," Vice President Kamala Harris wrote on Twitter.

Wednesday night, hundreds of people showed up and stood in front of the 32nd precinct for a vigil honoring the fallen officers.

Among those there were officers, firefighters and neighbors, all of them listening to stories from those in the community impacted by the tragedy.

As CBS2's Cory James reports, some of the stories came from the men and women in blue who knew both Rivera and Mora.

"Our two heroes, our two angels, Wilbert and Jason. These men carried themselves with pride and they loved what they were doing, and I want everybody to remember their smiles, their personalities, their beautiful souls," one speaker said.

"I'm sorry for not being there that day," one person said.

"To Mora, I'm sorry I wasn't there for you that night ... You know I love you," another person said.

Some shared stories about the friendships and special bonds they had with the men.

"To know that you're not going to pick up my Facetime at two in the morning," one person said.

"Outside of the uniform, we were friends. We used to hang out. We used to text. We used to call," one woman said.

"When I met Jason, he felt like a brother to me. In terms of Mora, he was my mentor. When I saw him lying down on the floor in that apartment, I couldn't believe my eyes. My brother was down there. He saved my life so many times, but I could not save his," one man said.

It's a pain Carmen Quionenes feels to her core.

"It hurts. It really hurts," she said.

She is a mom of an NYPD officer.

"Every day, you know, you're holding your breath every day," she said. "It's every day that you don't know if your kid is going to come through that door. Every freaking day."

Over in the Bronx, a smaller gathering took place in the streets, where community members came together to ignite change.

"This is our time to show that we really care about one another," said Rev. Dr. Deborah Jenkins, of Co-Op City.

Back at the vigil in Harlem, one inspector said, "We're here tonight to remember them, to make sure we never forget them."

And to thank the officer in training who took down the suspect.

"But when he goes home and puts his head on the pillow, all he can see is that apartment down the block. All he can do is keep thinking and thinking, did I do right? Well, I'm here to say publicly, yes, he did right. Yes, he did well," PBA President Pat Lynch said.

Three men honored in dance, in prayer and in song.

The wake for Rivera will be held starting at 1 p.m. Thursday at St. Patrick's Cathedral, followed by a funeral mass at 9 a.m. Friday. The wake for Mora will be held on Tuesday at 1 p.m., also at St. Patrick's Cathedral, with the funeral on Feb. 2 at 10 a.m.

JetBlue is offering free flights to other law enforcement officers and other public officials nationwide who are planning to attend the funerals.

CBS2's Dave Carlin contributed to this report.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.