The aide to Gov. Cuomo who was hospitalized for more than a week after being shot in the head during festivities leading up to the West Indian Day Parade in Brooklyn has died, police said.
Carey Gabay, a first deputy general counsel at the Empire State Development Corporation, succumbed to his injuries Wednesday night at Kings County Hospital, according to the NYPD.
Gabay had been hospitalized for more than a week while in a coma, and his family said earlier Wednesday he was brain dead.
Gabay was caught in the crossfire between two gangs around 3:40 a.m. Sept. 7 near the parade route in Brooklyn as more than two dozen shots from up to three guns were fired, authorities have said. The NYPD has released surveillance video of two men wanted for questioning in the case and authorities are offering a $12,500 reward for information leading to an arrest.
Gabay, a 43-year-old Harvard-educated lawyer and Bronx native, joined Cuomo's administration in 2011. The governor said in a statement Wednesday night he learned of Gabay's death "with profound sadness."
“Carey was the epitome of an outstanding public servant. He held a tremendous commitment to his community, and he chose to use his many talents to better the lives of others. New York is undeniably a better place today because of his service," Cuomo said."He was also a friend and role model to the many people who were blessed to have known him, and he will be greatly missed."
Gabay had been "fighting bravely surrounded by the loved ones to whom he has brought so much joy with his jovial nature, generosity of spirit and enduring smile," his family said in a statement earlier Wednesday, before he died.
"Many have come to know Carey through professional life, but he is also a kind-hearted and selfless soul who has touched the spirit of everyone he's met," the family said.
"Our family is grieving that a man in the prime of his life who has impacted so many lives could be struck down by such a callous act," the family's earlier statement said. "Carey embodies the American story. A son of Jamaican immigrants, he rose from Bronx public housing to earn an undergraduate and law degree from Harvard and then went on to a distinguished career as a lawyer in private practice and well-respected public servant."
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The shooting was one of several outbursts of violence in the neighborhoods surrounding the parade. A 24-year-old man was fatally stabbed near Grand Army Plaza.
Bloodshed before or after the West Indian Day celebration has become a sadly familiar part of the parade routine. Last year, a recent parolee opened fire into a crowd of revelers, killing one man and wounding several others. And in 2013, a 1-year-old boy sitting in his stroller was killed by a bullet meant for his father.
Asked about the future of the parade, Police Commissioner Bill Bratton said last week, "The political leadership, the community leadership, the communities themselves want that celebration. They've made that quite clear. ... So we will work to the best of our ability to deal with the elements in that community that engage in that violence."
Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to call Crime Stopper at 800-577-TIPS.