A 23-year-old woman from China who was raped and killed in a Queens alley last month was laid to rest Thursday. NY1's Grant Greenberg filed the following report.
The sound of a mother's pain filled a Flushing funeral home Thursday as Yu Yao was laid to rest. You didn't have to understand the mostly Mandarin ceremony to understand Guihua Yu's sorrow.
Her daughter moved to the U.S. from China two months ago to follow her dream and study to be a lawyer. That dream turned tragic on May 16th when the 23-year-old was beaten and raped in a Queens alley. She died five days later.
"Just by coming to America, her daughter did reach her American dream, and it's something she should be proud of," said Assemblywoman Grace Meng.
Yu didn't want to leave her daughter's side during the open casket funeral.
"She wouldn't let go of her daughter's hand and it almost doesn't matter what anyone's saying today," Meng said. "She keeps fixing her hair and making sure she looks good and that she's okay."
It took several court officers to control Yu earlier this week after she faced her daughter's alleged killed in court. For now, 28-year-old Carlos Salazar Cruz is charged with attempted murder and aggravated sex abuse. The charges are expected to be upgraded.
Guihua Yu had to be carried out behind her daughter's casket. Not many who attended Thursday's service actually knew the 23-year-old, but knowing the attack happened in their neighborhood has many upset.
"I just wish that the mom could have gone back to China knowing her daughter is okay, but instead now she has to bring her deceased daughter back to China," Meng said.
Yao's father was too sick to fly in for the funeral. His one request was that his daughter be brought back to China. Yao's mother will bring her only daughter home in an urn, after she's cremated in New York.