By NAN Staff Writer
News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Mon. May 22, 2023: The family of black immigrants from Guinea are mourning the loss of their 11-year-old son, who went missing on May 12thand was discovered dead on May 20th.
Alfa Barrie, 11, who disappeared along with his friend Garrett Warren, 13, on May 12th, was found dead in the waters off Manhattan’s Hudson River, according to the NYPD.
The finding marked over a week of prayers, searches and hope from his African family, that Alfa, a sixth grader who lived in the Morrisania neighborhood of the Bronx, would be found safe and sound. Fatoumata Diallo, his mother, had only one message for the community last week according to Africa In Harlem: “Help me find my son. I miss my son. My kids miss my son.”
Sadly, that was not to be, as little Alfa’s dead body was recovered by The NYPD Harbor Unit from the Hudson near 102n2 Street and Riverside Drive on Saturday morning.
Garrett’s body was pulled from the Harlem River, near the Madison Avenue Bridge, on Thursday. It’s unclear how the boys ended up in waters on opposite sides of Manhattan, though an NYPD spokesman on Sunday suggested “the tides had something to do with it” and said the investigation was ongoing.
Surveillance footage obtained by police showed Alfa and Garrett walking past a large group of people on Lenox Avenue at about 6 p.m. on May 12. Alfa was reported missing early Sunday morning and Garrett on Monday afternoon, police have said.
“We still do not understand what happened,” his uncle, Ahmadou Diallo told the NY Post, noting his nephew didn’t know how to swim.
“He was not the adventurous type – he would not have gone on an adventure like this,” Ibrahim Diallo, Alfa’s older brother told The Post on Sunday. “He never did anything like this. He never went missing before.”
The city’s medical examiner will determine the cause of death for the two boys.
This morning starting at 7:30 a.m., Representative Adriano Espaillat (NY-13), joined by NYS Assemblywoman Inez E. Dickens, will lead a vigil in memory of alfa and Garrett at Democracy Prep Harlem Middle School located at 207 W 133rd Street, New York, NY 10030.
“We extend our heartfelt condolences to the families of Garrett Warren and Alfa Barrie following this heartbreaking news that no parent should ever have to face. Our community embraces the families and friends of these two young men, and we pray for their strength and comfort during this time of grief,” said the elected officials.
A GoFundMe has so far been set up for little Alfa at https://www.gofundme.com/f/11-year-old-alfa-barrie-funeral. It has already raised $39,693 of its $100,000 target.