Det. Steven McDonald Remembered as 'Real Superman' at Tear-Filled Funeral

Detective Steven Mc Donald of the New York Police Department who was shot and paralyzed in the line of duty in 1986 smiles as he addresses the audience during a Catholic men's conference at Holy Trinity Diocesan High School in Hicksville N.Y. in 2

Detective Steven McDonald, the New York City police officer who was paralyzed after being shot in the line of duty 30 years ago and famously forgave his teenage assailant and went on to became a prophetic voice for forgiveness and reconciliation, died January 10. In it, McDonald speaks about how much attending games meant to him and his family after he became paralyzed.

McDonald, 59, died Tuesday at North Shore University Hospital on Long Island with his family, friends, and colleagues by his side, the NYPD said. In the more than three decades after his paralysis, McDonald took on the stature of a larger-than-life symbol of forgiveness - a police officer whose sacrifice was heralded by generations of mayors and institutions in New York City.

"We all know how important that statement was on the streets of New York City", said Monsignor Seamus O'Boyle, a cousin of McDonald's widow who knew the couple since the earliest days of their marriage. "Like so many cops, Steven joined the NYPD to make a difference in people's lives. And he accomplished that every day". Conor was born six months after the July 12 shooting.

McDonald remained on the police department payroll after being shot and later was named a detective.

"I'm sometimes angry at the teen-age boy who shot me", she read, according to The New York Times.

That message carried on to many around him. I only hope that he can turn his life into helping and not hurting people.

"Although a bullet paralyzed him, you could never stop his commitment to serve others", he said. This will be the first year that McDonald will not be on ice to present the award.

Detective Steven Mc Donald of the New York Police Department in wheelchair at right participates in the 10th annual Father Mychal F. Judge Walk of Remembrance in New York in Sept. 2011. McDonald who founded the walk in 2002 died Jan. 10 at a Long Islan

McDonald's correspondence with Jones reportedly continued for several years.

Jones was paroled in 1995 after nearly nine years in prison.

The detective was known for forgiving his attacker, and going on to travel around the world as a goodwill ambassador for the NYPD. In the years following the shooting, McDonald met with Pope John Paul II and Nelson Mandela, and sat for an interview with Barbara Walters.

The Rangers remembered him in a video tribute Tuesday night.

The following statement was read aloud by Steven McDonald's wife Patti Ann on his behalf at their son's baptism in 1987.

Conor McDonald saluted his dad's casket as it was led into a gray hearse before being driven down Fifth Avenue.

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