New York City comes to a standstill to honor fallen hero officer Steven McDonald

Thousands of officers and civilians lined New York City's Fifth Avenue outside St. Patrick's Cathedral Friday to pay their respects to hero NYPD Detective Steven McDonald, who died earlier this week.

Read: NYPD Detective Steven McDonald, Known for Forgiving Teen Shooter Who Left Him Paralyzed, Dies at 59

An armada of police and emergency vehicles escorted the hearse carrying McDonald's body from Long Island to New York City Friday morning.

Members of various Long Island Fire Departments lined the streets and saluted the casket as it went across the Long Island Expressway.

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Funeral for NYPD detective Steven McDonald
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Funeral for NYPD detective Steven McDonald

The casket of New York City police officer Steven McDonald is brought out of St. Patrick's Cathedral during his funeral on January 13, 2017 in New York City. McDonald, a New York City police officer who was shot by a 15-year-old boy in Central Park in July of 1986, was paralyzed from the neck down and famously forgave his assailant. Hundreds of uniformed officers lined Fifth Avenue for the service of the officer who died on Tuesday after having a heart attack.

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Wife Patricia Ann Norris-McDonald, and her son Conor follow the casket of New York City police officer Steven McDonald at St. Patrick's Cathedral during his funeral on January 13, 2017 in New York City. McDonald, a New York City police officer who was shot by a 15-year-old boy in Central Park in July of 1986, was paralyzed from the neck down and famously forgave his assailant. Hundreds of uniformed officers lined Fifth Avenue for the service of the officer who died on Tuesday after having a heart attack.

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

New York Police Department officers honor Officer Steven McDonald outside his funeral at St. Patricks Cathedral in Manhattan, New York City, U.S., January 13, 2017.

(REUTERS/Alex Wroblewski)

New York Police Department officers salute NYPD Officer Steven McDonald on January 13, 2017 in New York. McDonald, who was shot on July 12, 1986 and left paralyzed from the neck down remained on the force for more than three decades until he died last week at the age of 59.

(Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)

New York Police Department officers honor Officer Steven McDonald outside his funeral at St. Patricks Cathedral in Manhattan, New York City, U.S., January 13, 2017.

(REUTERS/Alex Wroblewski)

New York Police Department officers honor Officer Steven McDonald outside his funeral at St. Patricks Cathedral in Manhattan, New York City, U.S., January 13, 2017.

(REUTERS/Alex Wroblewski)

New York Police Department officers honor Officer Steven McDonald outside his funeral at St. Patricks Cathedral in Manhattan, New York City, U.S., January 13, 2017.

(REUTERS/Alex Wroblewski)

NYPD helicopters fly over Midtown to honor Detective Steven McDonald on January 13, 2017 in New York City. McDonald, who remained on the police force after being shot on July 12, 1986 and left paralyzed from the neck down, died on Tuesday at the age of 59.

(Photo by Afton Almaraz/Getty Images)

New York Police Department officers honor Officer Steven McDonald outside his funeral at St. Patricks Cathedral in Manhattan, New York City, U.S., January 13, 2017.

(REUTERS/Alex Wroblewski)

Conor McDonald follows the casket of his father New York City police officer Steven McDonald at St. Patrick's Cathedral during his funeral on January 13, 2017 in New York City. McDonald, a New York City police officer who was shot by a 15-year-old boy in Central Park in July of 1986, was paralyzed from the neck down and famously forgave his assailant. Hundreds of uniformed officers lined Fifth Avenue for the service of the officer who died on Tuesday after having a heart attack.

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

New York Police Department officers honor Officer Steven McDonald outside his funeral at St. Patricks Cathedral in Manhattan, New York City, U.S., January 13, 2017.

(REUTERS/Alex Wroblewski)

The casket of New York City police officer Steven McDonald is brought out of St. Patrick's Cathedral during his funeral on January 13, 2017 in New York City. McDonald, a New York City police officer who was shot by a 15-year-old boy in Central Park in July of 1986, was paralyzed from the neck down and famously forgave his assailant. Hundreds of uniformed officers lined Fifth Avenue for the service of the officer who died on Tuesday after having a heart attack.

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

New York Police Department officers honor Officer Steven McDonald outside his funeral at St. Patricks Cathedral in Manhattan, New York City, U.S., January 13, 2017.

(REUTERS/Alex Wroblewski)

New York Police Department officers honor Officer Steven McDonald outside his funeral at St. Patricks Cathedral in Manhattan, New York City, U.S., January 13, 2017.

(REUTERS/Alex Wroblewski)

A hearse carrying the body of New York City Police Department officer Steven McDonald is escorted by fellow officers during a procession down 5th Avenue to his funeral service at St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York, U.S., January 13, 2017.

(REUTERS/Mike Segar)

A hearse carrying the body of New York City Police Department officer Steven McDonald is escorted by fellow officers during a procession down 5th Avenue to his funeral service at St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York, U.S., January 13, 2017.

(REUTERS/Mike Segar)

People pause on the street during the funeral for New York City police officer Steven McDonald at St. Patrick's Cathedral on January 13, 2017 in New York City. McDonald, a New York City police officer who was shot by a 15-year-old boy in Central Park in July of 1986, was paralyzed from the neck down and famously forgave his assailant. Hundreds of uniformed officers lined Fifth Avenue for the service of the officer who died on Tuesday after having a heart attack.

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Uniformed officers salute outside Trump Tower as a hearse carrying the body of New York City Police Department (NYPD) officer Steven McDonald passes during a procession down 5th Avenue to his funeral service at St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York, U.S., January 13, 2017.

(REUTERS/Mike Segar)

Police officers attend the funeral for New York City police officer Steven McDonald at St. Patrick's Cathedral on January 13, 2017 in New York City. McDonald, a New York City police officer who was shot by a 15-year-old boy in Central Park in July of 1986, was paralyzed from the neck down and famously forgave his assailant. Hundreds of uniformed officers lined Fifth Avenue for the service of the officer who died on Tuesday after having a heart attack.

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Police officers attend the funeral for New York City police officer Steven McDonald at St. Patrick's Cathedral on January 13, 2017 in New York City. McDonald, a New York City police officer who was shot by a 15-year-old boy in Central Park in July of 1986, was paralyzed from the neck down and famously forgave his assailant. Hundreds of uniformed officers lined Fifth Avenue for the service of the officer who died on Tuesday after having a heart attack.

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Police officers attend the funeral for New York City police officer Steven McDonald at St. Patrick's Cathedral on January 13, 2017 in New York City. McDonald, a New York City police officer who was shot by a 15-year-old boy in Central Park in July of 1986, was paralyzed from the neck down and famously forgave his assailant. Hundreds of uniformed officers lined Fifth Avenue for the service of the officer who died on Tuesday after having a heart attack.

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

The casket of New York City police officer Steven McDonald is brought out of St. Patrick's Cathedral during his funeral on January 13, 2017 in New York City. McDonald, a New York City police officer who was shot by a 15-year-old boy in Central Park in July of 1986, was paralyzed from the neck down and famously forgave his assailant. Hundreds of uniformed officers lined Fifth Avenue for the service of the officer who died on Tuesday after having a heart attack.

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

New York Police Department officers salute NYPD Officer Steven McDonald on January 13, 2017 in New York. McDonald, who was shot on July 12, 1986 and left paralyzed from the neck down remained on the force for more than three decades until he died last week at the age of 59.

(Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)

New York Police Department officers salute NYPD Officer Steven McDonald on January 13, 2017 in New York. McDonald, who was shot on July 12, 1986 and left paralyzed from the neck down remained on the force for more than three decades until he died last week at the age of 59.

(Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)

Police officers attend the funeral for New York City police officer Steven McDonald at St. Patrick's Cathedral on January 13, 2017 in New York City. McDonald, a New York City police officer who was shot by a 15-year-old boy in Central Park in July of 1986, was paralyzed from the neck down and famously forgave his assailant. Hundreds of uniformed officers lined Fifth Avenue for the service of the officer who died on Tuesday after having a heart attack.

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

The casket of New York City police officer Steven McDonald is brought out of St. Patrick's Cathedral during his funeral on January 13, 2017 in New York City. McDonald, a New York City police officer who was shot by a 15-year-old boy in Central Park in July of 1986, was paralyzed from the neck down and famously forgave his assailant. Hundreds of uniformed officers lined Fifth Avenue for the service of the officer who died on Tuesday after having a heart attack.

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

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Cardinal Timothy Dolan officiated the service and also penned a special editorial for the hero cop on Tuesday in the New York Daily News

In the article, he called McDonald "a role model for forgiveness in the face of tragedy."

During Friday's service, he thanked McDonald for his "splendid life of service."

The NYPD cop was investigating a bicycle theft in Central Park when he was shot three times by a 15-year-old boy on July 12, 1986.

His wife Patti Ann, who was pregnant with their son Conor at the time, was reportedly told he would not survive his wounds. McDonald lived, but never walked again, and relied on a ventilator to help him breathe.

He became an internationally known advocate for peace after forgiving teenage shooter Savod Jones, who served nine years behind bars. Jones was killed in a motorcycle accident just days after leaving prison.

McDonald died Tuesday after suffering a heart attack on January 6. He was 59.

Read: Trooper Who Was 'Ambushed' on Highway Was Likely Saved by Armed Passerby

On Friday morning, the bagpipes were stilled and only a solemn drumbeat and the peal of a bell could be heard as the NYPD pipe band escorted the hearse to the cathedral. Then, as a lone piper played amazing grace, the coffin was carried inside.

Among those in attendance for Friday's service were New York City Mayor de Blasio, former mayors David Dinkins and Rudy Giuliani, NYPD Commissioner James O'Neill and his predecessor Bill Bratton.

The officer is survived by his wife and son, Conor, who following in his father's footsteps as a member of the New York Police Department in 2010. He is now a sergeant.

On Friday night, McDonald's favorite sports team, the New York Rangers, will honor the city's hero before their game at Madison Square Garden.

An award established in 1987 was named in his honor, the Steven McDonald Extra Effort Award, which has been given out each season to a member of the Rangers team who goes above and beyond the game and gives back to the community.

Watch: Cop Killed in Baton Rouge Ambush Wrote Chilling Post: I Get Nasty Hateful Looks


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