News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Tues. Sept. 4, 2018: The annual West Indian Day Parade organized by the West Indian American Day Carnival Association, (WIADCA), concluded without any violence Monday evening. But despite that stellar report, some media houses were quick to tag a shooting that occurred several blacks from the parade route before the start of the event to the Parade, as they have consistently in past years.
However, New York police confirmed there were no major incidents reported at Monday’s celebration and quickly said the shooting of a 26-year-old man who was shot in the back on Nostrand Ave., several blocks from the parade route at 7:30 a.m. Monday, was not related to the festivities.
As in past years, security was beefed up Monday and the NYPD presence was very visible for both the parade and the early morning J’Ouvert event.
The parade got underway after an annual breakfast that featured prominent city, state and federal politicians. At the event, while Gov. Cuomo made a faux pas, he also used the event to honor his former aide Carey Gabay, who was shot dead at age 43 by a stray bullet during J’Ouvert, the pre-dawn street festivities that traditionally precede the parade.
Cuomo announced the state planned to invest $15 million to turn the Bedford Union Armory into a community center named after Gabay. The 60,000 square foot Crown Heights facility, on Bedford Ave. and President St., will provide social services, youth mentoring programs and health care to the community, the governor said.
The parade then kicked off with First Lady Chirlane McCray and Brooklyn civil rights attorney Sandy Rubenstein serving as grand marshals for event along Eastern Parkway in Brooklyn.
The crowd on both sides of the Parkway was not as heavy as in previous years but the revelry, costumes, music and food still marked a mega celebration of West Indian American culture, the biggest in the Caribbean Diaspora in North America.