Mourners gathered in Westchester County, New York, on Friday for a funeral service honoring the 1-year-old twins who died last week after their father accidentally left them in the backseat of his car while he went to work.
As the New York Post reports, the twins’ father Juan Rodriguez was among distraught relatives and friends of the family who gathered for a funeral service, as Luna and Phoenix Rodriguez were laid out in open caskets, both dressed in white.
“Oh, my god. I love them so much. I can’t believe it,” Rodriguez, 39, reportedly said through tears in the lobby of the funeral home in Yonkers.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, Rodriguez told police that he thought he had dropped of his twins at daycare on Friday morning before he arrived to his job at a VA Hospital in the Bronx, where he works as a social worker counseling ailing and homeless veterans. Only after he pulled out of the parking lot after finishing his shift around 4 p.m. did Rodriguez realize the twins were still strapped inside their car seats in the backseat of the vehicle.
Rodriguez was charged with two counts of manslaughter and two counts of criminally negligent homicide, although he has not yet been indicted. His attorneys are reportedly asking for leniency, and authorities appear to believe that the twins’ death was a tragic accident. Rodriguez was briefly booked into jail before he was released on $100,000 bail last Saturday.
According to the New York Post, a family friend was heard whispering at the funeral, “no time will heal this.”
The twins mother Marissa A. Rodriguez was also present, but reportedly said little. According to the New York Times, the parents were seen embracing as they looked at photos of the twins, and both avoided looking into the coffins.
Supporters have launched a GoFundMe campaign to help the family with expenses as they grieve the loss of the babies.
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[Feature image: The Rodriguez family/GoFundMe]