Luis Alvarez’s family shares emotional memories at hero’s funeral

ASTORIA, Queens — Detective Luis Alvarez’s family remembered their fallen hero at his funeral mass Wednesday.

His sister, Aida Lugo shared an emotional eulogy for her older brother.

“From early on, my brother’s instinct to protect led him,” she said. “I was often told the story of how when anyone approached me, Louie would firmly grip the handle of my stroller, take on a soldier's stance and warn: ‘Don’t touch my baby.’”

“He was three and a half,” she joked.

She recounted her brother’s journey — from child, to marine, to father and husband, to New York’s Finest.

After detailing the pain of his cancer diagnosis and agonizing treatment, she shared the story of her brother’s next fight: healthcare funding for 9/11 first responders.

“It became my brother’s dying wish — the legacy he wanted to leave — that the bill protecting the Victim Compensation Fund be passed.”

Even until his final days, he was committed to that legacy.

Lugo shared a powerful story from the night before Alvarez’s death:

“I woke up to my brother attempting to get out of bed. He was coughing. He was agitated. He told me he had been walking, and walking, and walking. He wanted to sit in the chair. I called for the nurse who assisted in settling him down. I recounted what he had said. The nurse asked him where he had been walking, and with David as my witness, my brother responded: ‘I was walking to find first responders, to make sure they get help.’”

His eldest son, Dave, spoke about his father’s bravery, with a story prompting a crowded church to laugh.

“Once, when I was a kid, he came to visit me one Saturday afternoon, and I insisted he help me paint my room and rearrange my furniture. I was maybe 8 or 9 at the time. I sat on top of my dresser, maybe 5 feet off the ground, and leapt off. I asked him ‘wasn’t that brave dad?’ Without skipping a beat, without even looking my way, he said ‘Dave, there’s a fine line between bravery and stupidity.’ Those words have stuck with me my entire life.”

As the eulogies concluded, Dave shared a final message to his father.

“I love you, Dad. I promise to keep walking on the brave side of the line. I promise to be the man you inspired me to be.”

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.