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Jon Stewart, Ocasio-Cortez and hundreds of others attend funeral of 9/11 first responder Luis Alvarez

Hundreds of people reportedly gathered to say goodbye and pay respects to Luis Alvarez, an NYPD detective and 9/11 first responder who advocated through the end of his life for a bill to protect funds for his fellow first responders. 

Among the crowd at the Wednesday funeral in Queens was comedian Jon Stewart, a well-known vocal advocate for funds to help 9/11 first responders, and New York Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. 

{mosads}Alvarez, 53, died Saturday in hospice in Rockville Centre, N.Y., after fighting off complications of colorectal cancer linked to the three months he spent searching for survivors and remains of people, including his fellow officers, at ground zero.

“Fmr. Detective Luis Alvarez, 9/11 first responder, & loving father of 3 sons, left us far too soon. He spent his last days fighting for the 9/11 Victim’s Compensation Fund. Some issues should be above partisanship or delay. We must pass the bill as soon as Congress reconvenes,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted Wednesday.

Alvarez had lobbied for an extension of the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund in a visit with Stewart to D.C. in June, just days before he was placed in hospice care. He continued to fight for the bill from his hospice bed. 

Stewart condemned lawmakers at a House Judiciary subcommittee hearing for not acting swiftly enough to protect first responders. He went on to publicly call out Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) for what he called indifference.

McConnell pushed back on Stewart’s accusations that he’s held up funding for first responders in the past. 

The funding bill passed in the House and McConnell has said it will go to a floor vote in the Senate in August. 

If passed, it would extend funds for 9/11 first responders slated to run out this year through 2090.

Tags 9/11 Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez first responders Funeral Jon Stewart Luis Alvarez Mitch McConnell victims fund

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