BOSTON (AP) — Hundreds have gathered in Boston to mourn a 17-month-old boy who was found dead in the back of a transport van outside a day care.

The casket containing the body of Gabriel Josh-Cazir Pierre was lifted toward the altar at St. Mark’s Parish by family members on Saturday. Friends and relatives then offered their support and prayers.

The boy’s mother, Virginia Cazir, asked mourners not to shed tears of sorrow. She said she was crying because she was happy God had given her the gift of his life.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Kim Tunnicliffe reports

The boy was found Sept. 12 by the van’s driver, Luis Matos, after being left inside the van for hours on a sweltering day.

Matos apparently did not notice the boy earlier.

The state now requires such drivers to check for passengers when they leave a vehicle.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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