Community holds services for New City family killed in murder-suicide

According to religious leaders, all four members of the Morgan family were part of St. Francis of Assisi in West Nyack for nearly a decade.

Jonathan Gordon

Jan 3, 2024, 1:28 AM

Updated 200 days ago


Hundreds of people paid their respects to the victims of Saturday's murder-suicide at a pair of services at St. Francis of Assisi in West Nyack Tuesday evening.
According to religious leaders, all four members of the Morgan family were part of the church for nearly a decade.
"So many people knew the family, loved them, and had such great experiences of them, so it's a tragic thing and it's being felt," said St. Francis of Assisi Rev. Richard Baker.
The rosary and benediction were said at 5:30 p.m. and 8 p.m.
Longtime parishioner and religious education coordinator at St. Francis, Cathy Saladino shared her memories.
"The Morgan family was here, they were active, involved. The boys were just treasures. They were kind, loving, and faithful. They were a faithful family. Mom was just a sweetheart," she said.
Clarkstown police reported to the Morgan's New City home on Saturday for a welfare check. They discovered Bronxville Police Sgt. Watson Morgan, 49, shot his wife, Ornela, 43, and his sons Gabriel, 12, and Liam, 10, before turning the weapon on himself.
"Even though the days are dark, the light is still shining," said the Rev. Baker.
The church had two counselors on hand, including one specifically for children needing support.
"St. Francis is probably one of the kindest, most loving places I've ever been, and I hope that the Morgan family felt that when they were here because we felt that way about them," said Saladino.
There will be a third prayer service on Thursday at 6 p.m.
Friends of the Morgan family, the Clarkstown Central School District, the church, the town of Clarkstown, and the Clarkstown Police Department are holding a candlelight vigil for the family on Wednesday at Germonds Park in West Nyack starting at 6 p.m.
Limited parking will be available on site so overflow parking and shuttles will be available at Felix Festa Middle School starting at 5 p.m.

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