NEW YORK (FOX 5 NY) - As days go by for grievers in the Bronx, the intense pain felt by the community lingers on.
"She actually was a beautiful soul. Genuinely she would just go and nurture you just like the mother that she was," said EMT Edgar Romero.
On Sunday night, hundreds came together in Soundview to pray, light candles and make sure Yadira Arroyo, heroic EMT and mother of 5, did not die in vain. Her 19-year-old son put on a brave face and spoke to Fox 5.
"Everything that everyone has been doing it just brings down the pain; it brings down the numbness, even though it's still there. It's bringing it down little by little to see everyone get together- the family, the community, even strangers, it's pretty cool and that honestly makes me feel better," said Kenneth Robles, Arroyo’s son.
Cops said on Thursday 25-year-old Jose Gonzalez hijacked the ambulance 44-year-old Arroyo worked in while she was outside the vehicle. Gonzalez ran over the woman's body and the vehicle then dragged her down the street. It was a gruesome and shocking scene for Arroyo's colleagues and witnesses, one of whom captured the mayhem. Cops said Gonzalez had a long criminal record. Fox 5 spoke with Gonzalez's father briefly through the door of his University Heights home. He claimed his son is mentally ill and that he tried for years to get him proper help and care.
"The city of New York failed. They didn't identify the situation with this individual and that's why we're here today and it's unfortunate at best, he needs help, but sadly he's taken away a family member from this community who saved lives and that's the problem," said community advocate Tony Herbert.
Gonzalez was arraigned on several charges, including murder and he's being held without bail. His lawyer claimed Arroyo's death wasn't intentional. As for the Bronx community, they'll continue to fight through the pain and keep Arroyo's memory alive.