The Grave Above the Grave by Bernie B. Kerik

The Grave Above the Grave by Bernie B. Kerik

Author:Bernie B. Kerik
Language: eng
Format: epub
Publisher: Humanix Books
Published: 2018-09-11T16:00:00+00:00

CHAPTER 18

9:00 am, Monday, 23 October

A light and warm drizzle washed down on Manhattan as thousands of police and mourners filled the streets of Fifth Avenue. All the way north to Central Park and south as far as 46th Street, police formations marched inside the barriers that had been placed along the sidewalks as a further layer of protection in the event of a terrorist attack. Behind them, thousands of pedestrians stood, some with umbrellas, most bareheaded, to mourn the loss of Jimmy Kerrigan, a local boy no one had ever heard of until he was killed in Fayetteville. He became, to them, every victim who had died at the hands of terrorists, and one of their own, the nephew of the city’s police commissioner. How many times had they turned to him in the past, whenever the city had been under siege from terrorists, or experienced natural catastrophes? Now, they wanted to show their support, their love, for him and the city in which they all lived. Nothing, least of all a little rain, would keep them away.

Inside St. Patrick’s, white wreaths tied with black bows hung from the columns, and chrysanthemums graced the altar, behind Jimmy’s closed mahogany casket that was covered by the green, blue, and white flag of the NYPD. To the right of the casket, a giant photo of a smiling Jimmy in full-dress police uniform sat on a large brass easel, draped with a black ribbon. TV cameras were discreetly placed in platforms around the grand arena of the storied Catholic house of worship. The service was being broadcast nationwide, and picked up, via satellite, all around the world, for anyone who wanted to see it. In a remarkably short amount of time, the double attack had become a symbol of all victims of terror, and of the determination of Americans to defeat Islamic fundamentalist terrorism.

Raymond was seated in the first row of pews, on the right, with Linda and her estranged second husband, Kelly, and their younger son, Tommy, sitting next to him. Raymond felt a wave of regret wash over him, wishing that he had never assigned Jimmy to JTTF, lamenting that he didn’t protect him in some way. To his left were the mayor and his wife, the governor and his wife, and Sheilah Dannis; then Jones and then Gallagher. The second row, on both sides, was filled with FBI agents and NYPD security personnel with weapons hidden from view. After that, filling in the rest of the pews, Jimmy’s friends and other relatives, his unit, and anyone from the public able to get through the triple screening at the front doors, that, because it was an unusually warm fall day, were left open and guarded. From outside, the sound of bagpipes blowing “Amazing Grace” drifted through the open doors, as their procession marched on Fifth Avenue, headed south, until their mournful sound slowly faded away. St. Patrick’s enormous pipe organ then filled the church with its grand, ringing sound that signaled the formal beginning of the funeral ceremonies.



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