On Monday night, family and friends gathered in the Bronx to grieve the loss of one of the two boys who had been missing since they went missing in Harlem more than a week ago. Nearly two weeks after Alfa Barrie, 11, and his friend, Garrett Warren, 13, disappeared from their school’s parking lot, the Futa Islamic Center was packed with mourners who prayed and sobbed for the boys’ safe return.
Both of their bodies were eventually located by police divers after days of searching. Warren was discovered in the Harlem River on Thursday, and Barrie was located in the Hudson River on Saturday. According to the investigation, the two were joking around on the Harlem River Drive bike path on May 12.
A third young man present at the time witnessed their demise in the water. Hours passed before he located an adult he could ask for help from. The police spent the entire night looking but came up empty. The two families didn’t report the boys missing until many days later, by which time the strong river current had already separated their bodies.
About a mile south of where they entered, close to 145th Street, Warren was located. Barrie’s body was discovered on 99th Street, near Riverside Park, on the other side of Manhattan. “Which struck everyone as odd, but if you know those currents it can carry you north around the tip and then back down,” ex-NYPD Deputy John Miller said of the perilous waters the couple entered.
The news regarding the Harlem boys has been confirmed by the tweet below:
Vigil held in the Bronx for 1 of 2 boys who died after going missing in Harlem https://t.co/ta9bvTJ47O pic.twitter.com/CKgjWnfAMV
— Eyewitness News (@ABC7NY) May 23, 2023
For Barrie’s loved ones, none of this makes sense. The child who never came home from school wanted to be an engineer when he grew up and had planned to surprise his mother with presents for Mother’s Day.
Barrie’s brother, Ibrahim Diallo, described him as “someone who didn’t just care about himself but also about his family and the people around him.” A smile was always on his face. Another memorial service will be held by the school community of Barrie on Tuesday afternoon, this time at Democracy Prep Middle School.
Devout members of the West African Muslim community are unable to give Barrie a proper burial because the medical examiner has not yet delivered his body and determined the cause of de@th. The East River rescue of Warren occurred on Thursday. The coroner determined that he drowned acc!dentally.
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