Saying Goodbye to Jose Sucuzhañay

“Hundreds of tearful mourners gathered Wednesday to remember an Ecuadoran immigrant beaten to death by a hate-spewing gang in Bushwick, Brooklyn. The funeral for real estate broker Jose Sucuzhañay was punctuated with calls for justice and faith after the murder that shocked the city. … Sucuzhañay’s mother, her face contorted with grief, struggled to walk down the aisle of the packed church, supported by Jose’s brother Diego. … Jose Sucuzhañay’s body will be flown back to his hometown in the Andes mountains for burial. Ecuadoran community leaders called him a martyr for immigrants from the South American nation. … ‘He made a tremendous sacrifice,’ said Walter Sinche of the Alianza Ecuadoriana. ‘We come here to make this country stronger and don’t need to end up this way.’

“Jose Sucuzhañay, 31, a father of two, was walking arm in arm with his brother, Romel, near his home in Bushwick on Dec. 7 when a car full of thugs started shouting anti-gay and anti-Latino epithets. The men in the SUV chased down the brothers, clubbing Romel with a beer bottle and hitting Jose with a bat. He died a few days later. Cops are still hunting for the attackers.” [NYDN, photo]