The widow of a New York City police officer shot dead in Harlem a year ago has announced she is expecting her “miracle” baby.
“While Jason is not here in physical form to see and experience our miracle, I know he will always be here in spirit, watching, protecting and loving us,” said Dominique Rivera, wife of NYPD Officer Jason Rivera, at a commemorative mass. on Saturday at the Cathedral of St. Patrick.
“For my unborn son, my hope is that with time, guidance and love, they too will know their father. And as a family, we will vow to never forget and honor Jason’s tremendous legacy of service and sacrifice.”
The baby is due in the spring.
Jason Rivera, 22, and Officer Wilbert Mora, 27, were shot on Jan. 21, 2022, while responding to a 911 call about a woman having an altercation with her son in a Harlem apartment. The two officers were shot at without warning as they proceeded down a narrow hallway to a back room where the suspect was staying, police said.
The suspect, Lashawn Mcneil, 47, was shot by a third officer and died days later in hospital.
Dominique Rivera said the past year was “unbearable” and there were times when she felt she had lost her way.
“While I can understand that for most of you life has gone on, it feels like time has stopped for me… I’ve been thinking about all the plans we made, what our lives would be like now that we’re married. Thinking about the day we could making each other dinner or waiting for each other to see who gets home first. Taking annual vacation and soaking up all the love that newlyweds feel,” she said. “The pain became so unbearable that, to deal with it, I started telling myself that we had separated. That was easier to accept than acknowledging his death.”
Mora’s sister also spoke during the memorial, reading a message in Spanish. Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell called the officers “heroes”.
“We carry on the legacies of Jason and Wilbert. We move forward with hearts heavy with invisible medallions holding their memories, a year of tears and an immersive amount of sadness,” she said.
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