More than two-and-a-half-years after New York police officer Wenjian Liu was killed in his patrol car, his wife Pei Xia Chen has given birth to their daughter, Angelina, at New York-Presbyterian Hospital.
In December 2014, her husband and his partner Rafeel Ramos were ambushed and killed. On the night her husband was shot, Chen asked that his semen be preserved with the hope of one day having their child, according to a New York City Police Department.
At Liu's funeral, the tearful widow said, "Even though he left us early, I believe he is still with us".
Chen said that she felt early on that she would have a daughter."I told my friend, 'It's going to be a baby girl,' she said. "My friend said, 'No, you haven't even checked the sonograms,' but I was right!"
Chen had recently married Liu when he was brutally shot in Bedford-Stuyvesant by gunman Ismaaiyl Brinsley, who would soon take his own life.
On Tuesday, Liu's parents came to see Chen and the grandchild that once must have seemed inconceivable with the loss of their son.
Chen didn't tell her in-laws about her attempts at artificial insemination until she was pregnant. "She didn't want to break her family's hearts if it wasn't successful," Susan Zhuang, a family friend, told Newsday. "The parents were very emotional, crying and holding the baby," Chen's friend Maria Dziergowski told the New York Post.
Liu's mother told the New York Daily News that the baby "looks like my daughter-in-law. But this part, the eyes and the forehead, looks like my son. The top of the face looks like my son. The bottom looks like her mother. The head looks exactly like my son."I see my son in her."She told Newsday that the family plans to take the baby to visit Liu's grave when she's a month old. "This way I can tell him he has a daughter," she said Liu's father, speaking in Cantonese with PIX11, said, "My heart is filled with love."
Speaking at the ceremony, Liu's father, Wei Tang Liu, talked about his son's dedication to his family.
"He called me every day before he finished work, to assure me that he is safe, and to tell me, 'Dad, I'm coming home today, you can stop worrying now.'"Speaking in Chinese, he added, "Today is the saddest day of my life. My only son has left me."