Find Avonte Oquendo

Family, community members, and ultimately many NY residents joined to pay their last respects to 14 year old Avonte Oquendo; hit the jump for more.

Adriela Batista

This Saturday (Jan. 25) morning, an emotion-filled Greenwich funeral home, served as the haven for family, supporters, mourners to gather and pay their respects to their late, missing family member, Avonte Oquendo.

“It was like complete silence, it was very sad,” said family friend Leslie Burch after exiting the Greenwich Village wake. “It was a weird feeling. Nobody could speak. Nobody really spoke.” “It was just silence, but a beautiful silence.”

The mourners included actress and one-time “Celebrity Apprentice” runner-up Holly Robinson Peete, the mother of an autistic child. “Headed to NYC to celebrate the life of another angel,” she tweeted hours before the service.

Tragedy struck Oct. 4th when the 14 year old autistic boy had gone missing and was last seen at his school. His mother Vanessa Fontaine and family remained hopeful, and even posted a reward for $90,000; yet Jan 16th, remains had been found brushed up against the Queens side of the river. 5 days later, the medical examiner confirmed it was Avonte Oquendo.

The child’s family is looking to sue the state for $25 million, over his disappearance from his school:

“Family lawyer David Perecman says Oquendo walked directly past a security desk in the Riverview School and into the street in the middle of the school day.The family alleges that police weren’t notified of Avonte’s departure for more than an hour.”