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Widow of slain officer issues brief but powerful message

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NEW YORK (PIX11/AP) -- The devastated widow of a New York City police officer gunned down with his partner while they sat in a patrol car issued a brief but powerful message about the death of her husband, whom she married just two months ago.

“This is a difficult time for both of our families,” Pei Xia Chen said through tears Monday evening. “But we will stand together and get through this together.”

Held up by family members, Officer Wenjian Liu’s widow expressed condolences for the family of Officer Rafael Ramos, who was on patrol with her husband Dec. 20 when they were ambushed  by 28-year-old Ismaaiyl Brinsley, the final act in a rampage that began when he shot and wounded his ex-girlfriend at her home outside Baltimore, then made threatening posts online, including a vow to put “wings on pigs” and references to high-profile cases of police officers shooting unarmed black men.

A massive memorial continued to grow Tuesday at the site where the pair was gunned down in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn. Dozens of candles, flowers, a menorah, U.S. flags, black and blue balloons and notes of condolences marked the spot.

officer memorial

As the city mourned the tragedy, family members shared memories of men they lauded as heroes, both in their career choice and in their personal lives.

One of Ramos’ two sons posted a heartbreaking message on Facebook about how much his father -- who celebrated his 40th birthday this month -- meant to him.

He was the best father I could ask for,” 13-year-old Jaden Ramos wrote. “It’s horrible that someone gets shot dead just for being a police officer. Everyone says they hate cops but they are the people that they call for help. I will always love you and I will never forget you. RIP Dad.”