The families of the police officers executed on a Brooklyn street emerged to address the public yesterday. Pei Xia Chen, the widow of newlywed Officer Wenjian Liu, said, "The Liu family would like to express our gratitude and appreciation to the police department, our neighbors, the entire New York City community, friends and coworkers... We would like to express our condolences to Officer Ramos’ family. This is a difficult time for both of our families, but we will stand together and get through this together."

Liu, 32, and partner Rafael Ramos, 40, were sitting in a squad car on Tompkins Avenue near Myrtle in Bedford Stuyvesant on Saturday afternoon when Ismaaiyl Brinsley walked up behind their vehicle and fatally shot them. Brinsley later killed himself on the Myrtle Avenue G train platform after being pursued by the police, and it was soon learned that he had shot his girlfriend in Maryland that morning before traveling to Brooklyn, apparently with the intention to kill police officers.

According to the Daily News, Liu wasn't originally scheduled to work on Saturday:

Slain Police Officer Wenjian Liu believed in leading a life of service — and his dedication was evident on the day he was killed: He volunteered to work a fill-in shift when a fellow officer was late.

Liu, 32, took the assignment after the cop who was tardy called a desk sergeant at the NYPD’s 84th Precinct in downtown Brooklyn and bosses put out a request for a replacement, police sources said.

“He wasn’t supposed to be there,” a cop source said...

The cop Liu replaced Saturday — who was normally paired with Ramos — was wracked by feelings of guilt, police sources said.

“The kid is very, very distraught,” a police source said. “He’s beside himself. It’s very, very hard for him.”

Liu immigrated to the United States from China in 1994, at age 12. A statement from the family noted, "He arrived to America and attended Lafayette High School where he learned to speak English. He then went on to study at Kingsboro Community College and the College of Staten Island majoring in Accounting. Traditionally, Asian families want their children to become professionals in the field of medicine or finance."

However, Liu was an auxiliary police officer before joining the NYPD seven years ago; the statement continued, "Wen Jian was active within the Police Department. He was an asset to the Police Department using his Chinese Language skills whenever and wherever it was needed. When he was off duty, he participated in the social and fraternal functions with the NYPD Asian Jade Society, where he has been a member since 2007. Wen Jian married Pei Xia Chen in September of this year. He was looking forward to having his own family. Wen Jian is proud to be a New York City Police Officer."

Liu helped support his parents, including his father who irons at a garment factory. Governor Andrew Cuomo, who visited the officer's family yesterday, said, "From the practical side, how are they gonna pay for the mortgage? His mother is having some medical treatment; her son is paying for it — who is gonna pay that now?"

Ramos, a husband and father of two, was a more recent police officer, having joined three years ago after being a school safety officer. His aunt, Lucy Ramos, said, "I would like to thank all those who have shared their sympathy and support for our beloved family member, Rafael Ramos, who will always be loved and missed by many. I hope and pray that we can reflect on this tragic loss of lives that have occurred, so that we can move forward and find an amicable path to a peaceful coexistence. We would like to extend our condolences to the Liu family, also. Thank you."

Funeral arrangements have been made for Ramos, with a viewing on Friday, December 26, at Christ Tabernacle Church (64-34 Myrtle Avenue, Glendale NY) between 2 p.m. and 9 p.m. and the funeral at the church on Saturday, December 27, at 10 a.m.

Mayor de Blasio also visited both families yesterday. He has asked for protesters to suspend demonstrations until after the funerals, and said that police unions are stopping their rhetoric for now.