CROWN HEIGHTS, N.Y. - Funeral services were held Friday in Crown Heights for NYPD Detective Troy Patterson.
He died Saturday after spending more than 30 years in a vegetative state.
In 1990 at the age of 27, Patterson was shot in the head by a 15-year-old during an attempted robbery while he was off-duty, washing his car in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn.
The 15-year-old and two others, wanted $20 to join a basketball league.
Detective Cliff Hollingsworth held candlelight vigils for his friend every year since.
Patterson was an accomplished musician as well as a highly decorated officer in the 1980s during one of the city's darkest chapters, overrun with drugs and murders.
"With barely six and a half years on the job, he amassed over 150 arrests," said NYPD First Deputy Commissioner Edward Caban.
Patterson’s cousin, Anthony Patterson said, "He said that he wanted to make a difference in his community."
Paul DiGiacomo, the president of the Detectives’ Endowment Association said, "It was cops like Troy who turned this city around."
Patterson's son, Troy Dante Patterson, Jr., was just five years old when his father was shot.
The Historic First Church of God in Christ in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, was filled with members of the NYPD.
The family was grateful for the department's support for the past 33 years. Family and friends held on to hope that Patterson might one day recover.
Mayor Eric Adams was among the young cops at that time.
"All of us would sit in our cars privately and just uncontrollably cry while we watched such an energetic, joyful, good man live his life in that manner," said Adams.