New York (Fox 5 NY) - Hundreds of mourners bid their final farewells to Brooklyn District Attorney Kenneth Thompson, who passed away suddenly, October 9.
Hundreds packed the Christian Cultural Center in East New York Saturday morning to pay their final respects to Brooklyn’s first African-American D.A.
Thompson was being remembered as a "champion of justice" who established a reputation as a reformer whose top priority was protecting the rights of everyone.
Raymond Lohier, judge of the U.S. court of appeals for the second circuit said, "We should remember Ken for embracing a theory of justice rooted not in punishment, but in compassion. Not in politics, but in the fair administration of justice for every person regardless of background."
Mayor Bill de Blasio, first lady Chirlaine McCray, Governor Andrew Cuomo, and U.S attorney Loretta Lynch were among the mourners.
"His passion for justice didn't come from reading a book, but from living on the block,” said Cuomo.
Thompson died last Sunday at the age of 50- just days after publicly revealing his cancer diagnosis.
He became Brooklyn’s District Attorney in 2014. During his nearly three years in office, Thompson expanded an initiative that reviews cases for potential wrongful convictions. He also prosecuted former NYPD officer Peter Liang, who was found guilty in the Akai Gurley case. He obtained a guilty verdict, but faced criticism for recommending no jail time.
The married father of two was born into law enforcement as the son of one of the NYPD’s first female police officers. He spent part of his childhood in public housing then went onto John Jay College and NYU School of Law.
Loretta Lynch, U.S. Attorney General said, "Ken literally changed the face of justice in Brooklyn. He changed what justice looked like. He changed what justice meant for so many people."