A Brooklyn community is mourning the loss of a former teacher. He was walking in his Williamsburg neighborhood when he was struck and killed by a marked NYPD van. As News 4's Sheldon Dutes shows us, his former students and friends say he was a careful man and this news is devastating.
A 61-year-old former schoolteacher was crossing the street in his Brooklyn neighborhood over the weekend when police said he was hit by one of their marked vans.
Felix Coss, who died while being taken to Bellevue Hospital, was struck near the intersection of Hooper Street and Broadway in Williamsburg at around 4:30 p.m. Saturday.
Officials said Coss had the right of way, and friends describe him as a cautious individual who wouldn't have knowingly put himself in danger.
"He wouldn't cross without his light," said Denia Brache. "I'm sure of that."
Coss was remembered during Mass at Williamsburg's Transfiguration Roman Catholic Church, where he participated in the church's Bible study group. He also taught elementary school at the parish school for many years.
"He was a very soulful individual," said one of his former students, who identified herself as Ms. Garcia. "He loved his students and his students loved him and he's going to be greatly missed."
Funeral arrangements had yet to be scheduled, but fellow parishioners expect a number of his family members from Puerto Rico to come.
"We're waiting for them to come to join us so we can give a proper farewell," said Lucy Lucerna.
The name of the officer driving the van that hit Coss has not been released. Police say the case remains under investigation but that no criminality is suspected.