RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — The family of a Raleigh police officer killed in the Hedingham mass shooting in October has been gifted a mortgage-free home.
Officer Gabriel Torres was shot and killed in the line of duty on Oct. 13 as he prepared to go to work. Torres and his family lived in the Hedingham neighborhood. The 29-year-old left behind his wife and daughter.
The Tunnel to Towers Foundation said they welcomed Torres’ family into their new mortgage-free home during a private ceremony.
“There are some things in life that you just do not expect to happen. I never expected to tragically lose my husband last October. I did, however, expect our normal routine. He was supposed to make it to work alive … come home alive. He did not get that chance,” said Torres’ wife, Jasmin Torres.
Jasmin said being left as a single parent to their daughter, Layla, came with a list of concerns.
“Tunnel to Towers helped restore my diminished confidence to tackle life head-on with my daughter. The unexpected happened again, this time in the most incredible way ever,” she said.
Raleigh Police Chief Estella Patterson and Maj. Brian Harrison expressed their gratitude for the organization’s support of the Torres family.
“The Raleigh Police Department is extremely grateful for the love, benevolence, and support Tunnel to Towers has given to Jasmin and Layla. Their commitment to honor the lives of our fallen heroes and their families across the nation is remarkable,” Chief Patterson said.
“None of us can ever replace the hole that Gabe left in this family and in this world, but we can honor him and carry on his legacy of service. In Galatians 6, we are called to ‘Carry each other’s burdens’ and hopefully today will ease part of Jasmin and Layla’s burden … a safe place for Layla to grow up, a place where family always has a place to stay, and a place where friends and family can come to honor the life and service of Gabe,” Harrison said.
The foundation’s Fallen First Responder Program pays off the mortgages for the families of law enforcement officers and firefighters who are killed in the line of duty, pass away from 9/11-related illnesses, and leave behind young children.
Jasmin said her husband would be speechless by the support she has received.
“I know he would be so thankful that his girls are being taken care of; he worked so hard to do that for us himself,” she said.