Erica Garner in 2015.
Amanda Meyers / AP
Erica Garner, who became an activist following her father’s death after he was arrested by a cop who put him in a chokehold, died on Saturday after having a heart attack at the age of 27.
Her political director Reggie Harris shared the news on Garner’s Twitter account, tweeting, “She passed away this morning. The reports are real. We didn’t deserve her.”
At his weekly telecast, Rev. Al Sharpton said that Garner’s mother, Esaw Snipes, called him around 6:15 a.m. on Saturday morning to say she died.
“The media will say Erica died of a heart attack, but that’s only partially true because her heart was already broken when she couldn’t get justice for her father,” Sharpton said. “In her memory we will keep fighting for justice.”
Activist Shaun King, who had been in touch with the Garner family, said, “We’re less because of this loss.”
“When you were her friend, you her friend through all adversity,” said King. “She was a fierce protector of her friends and family. A truth teller. As genuine and authentic of a soul you’ll ever encounter.”
The mother of two and oldest daughter of Eric Garner had a heart attack last week and was hospitalized over the weekend. Her official Twitter account had said that she was in a coma.
Garner became an advocate and organizer following her father’s death in 2014 in Staten Island after a New York City police officer put him in a chokehold for about 15 seconds while arresting him.
A NYPD officer in plainclothes had approached Eric Garner on suspicion of selling untaxed single cigarettes. The incident was filmed by a witness, and the 43-year-old man, who had asthma, could be heard saying “I can’t breathe” 11 times while being held on the ground. The video was widely shared and sparked nationwide protests, with Garner’s last words becoming a rallying cry for Black Lives Matter activists.
A case against the arresting officer, Daniel Pantaleo, who is white, went to a grand jury, but he was not indicted, leading to even more protests.
Erica Garner, center, with grandmother Gwen Carr, left, her sister Emerald Snipes, second from right, and Eric Garner’s widow, Esaw Snipes.
Mary Altaffer / AP
Following her father’s death, Erica Garner became an outspoken activist fighting against police brutality. She held vigils and twice-a-week “die-ins” on Staten Island in memory of her father, in which protesters marched to the spot where he was put in the fatal chokehold.
“I feel the love and energy from around the world, but on Staten Island it’s been emotionless,” Erica Garner told the New York Daily News in 2014 after a biweekly demonstration in front of the store where cops had approached her father.
“I felt his spirit when I was walking down to the spot,” she said. “I’ve been doing this every Tuesday and Thursday since my father’s death. I do it without cameras there. I do it with …read more
Source: news Us