Hundreds of mourners, many kneeling in prayer on tarps and newspapers, lined the street outside a mosque yesterday during the tear-filled funeral for the 10 African immgrants, nine of them children, killed in the city's deadliest fire in two decades.There are other, interrupting numbers throughout the article, and I can't find a "one" in sequence -- except that I am one heartless and morbid individual.
Eight tiny caskets were brought into the mosque one at a time. One coffin held 7-month-old twins. All the plain, unfinished caskets were pointed toward Mecca in adherence to Islamic traditions.
"I haven't stopped crying yet," said Ethel Hogue, 63, who was among those gathered outside the mosque. "You understand with adults, but children who haven't had a chance. The whole area is numb. We just can't believe this has happened."
After the ceremony, pallbearers carried the caskets out of the mosque toward several waiting hearses. The bodies of Magassa's five children, ranging in age from 1 to 7, were taken to a Muslim cemetery in New Jersey. Soumare's four children, from 7 months to 7 years old, and wife will be flown back to Mali, the victims' homeland.
Hospital officials said the three surviving fire victims were improving. The Magassas' 6-year-old daughter was upgraded to good condition yesterday. Two other members of the Magassa family, ages 5 and 23, have been upgraded to fair condition.
Countdown of -- no, *by* the damned
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