WORCESTER (CBS) – Thousands of people, including first responders and Gov. Charlie Baker, showed up to pay their final respects Wednesday afternoon at the wake for Worcester Police Officer Manny Familia.
Officer Familia died last Friday after he jumped into Green Hill Pond to try and save 14-year-old Troy Love who also drowned.
“That’s the type of guy he was and that’s why you see so much love,” said family friend Randy Rodriguez. “Such a huge impact on the city, not just the family.”
Police came from around the state to remember Officer Familia. “You have children, and you hope that there are guys out there … to save them,” said Townsend Police Chief James Sartell.
The line of mourners at St. John’s Catholic Church on Temple Street was about 100 yards long as first responders and civilians lined up to offer condolences to Familia’s wife Jennifer. A funeral service is scheduled for Thursday at 10 a.m.
Among the mourners was 12-year-old Ryan Muscaro. “I feel like one of my family members has died,” Ryan said. “I care about the police so much.”
Friends say Familia was a dad first, and his son’s little league team came to Wednesday’s wake.
“This is a true narrative this is what the police are all about here especially here in the city of Worcester men and women who give of themselves each and every day without hesitation, and that’s the beauty of what this is what it’s all about today,” said Worcester Police Chaplain Jonathan Slavinskas
The day started with Officer Manny Familia’s body escorted from the funeral home and carried into the church. His cruiser, parked outside the Worcester Police Department since he died Friday, is draped in black.
“There’s not one of them that wouldn’t do what he did. He’s a hero, but every one of them would have done the same thing I believe,” said Pat Coyne, of Worcester, whose daughter is on Worcester’s police force.
Familia was a five-year veteran of the department. He was 38 years old and, in addition to his wife, leaves two children, a son and a daughter.
Worcester Police attach a wreath to the front of fallen Officer Manny Familia’s cruiser draped with black bunting, prepared for calling hours this afternoon and tonight. #wbz pic.twitter.com/QPaa9lLb8N
— Christina Hager (@HagerWBZ) June 9, 2021
Donations for the Familia family are also being accepted through the Worcester Police Department Credit Union.
Checks can be mailed to:
The Familia Family Memorial Fund
c/o Worcester Police Federal Credit Union
805 West Boylston Street
Worcester, MA 01606