The wonders of modern technology! A year after U.S. Customs officer Maurice Gordon was fatally shot, he’s become a father for the second time.
Maurice Gordon and his wife, Katisha, already had a toddler, Zoe, conceived through in vitro fertilization, or IVF, and were trying for another when he was slain while off duty on a Queens street in a hail of bullets.
After the June 2010 murder, Katisha was able to use some of the leftover embryos from their first fertility procedure to get pregnant again through IVF.
On July 26, she delivered 6-pound, 8-ounce Paige, a little beauty who is the image of the dad she’ll never know.
“I wanted another child with Maurice,” the 34-year-old Katisha said. “It was something we both discussed, so there was no hesitation at all.”
Her husband was killed in front of his parents’ house after a night out with a cousin who was visiting from Jamaica.
Police believe the killer tried to pick up the cousin at Moments Night Club in Elmont, L.I., was rebuffed, and followed her and Gordon, 33, to Queens.
The slaying soon became a double tragedy. Maurice’s father, Desmond, died of a heart attack the day of his son’s funeral.
Through her grief, Katisha remembered how her husband had made it clear he did not want Zoe, now 2, to be an only child, and she decided to undergo IVF again.
Her doctor warned it was too soon after such traumatic events to try again, but she could not be dissuaded.
A few months later, she was pregnant.
“She called me in a room and said, ‘I have a surprise,’ ” said Maurice’s sister Dionne Gordon. “She showed me a sonogram. I was speechless and laid down on the couch for a very long time. Of course, I was overcome with joy.
“The baby is beautiful, but it is sad at the same time because Maurice is written all over her face,” Dionne said.
“He was a such a father figure to Zoe, and he doesn’t have that opportunity to do it with Paige.”
Katisha, who lives in Bayside, Queens, has her hands full with two kids, her nursing job at a Long Island hospital and master’s degree studies at Adelphi University. Her family and Maurice’s colleagues at U.S. Customs and Border Protection help out.
“I would love to have a third [child], but it would be very difficult — unless I win Lotto,” she said.
Although Paige has brought so much happiness into their shattered lives, the family remains frustrated that Maurice’s killer is still on the loose.
Cops have few leads, and the NYPD is offering a $22,000 reward for information that leads to an arrest and indictment. Anyone with information is asked to call (800) 577-TIPS.
“No matter how much time is left on Earth, the pain that we’ve had with the loss of Maurice and Desmond Gordon will never be healed,” Dionne said. “One murder caused two deaths.”
“My fight is to help the authorities find who did this,” she added.
Katisha wants to be able to tell her children one day that those responsible for their father’s murder have been brought to justice.
“Zoe still remembers her father,” she said.
“She has a cross on a chain around her neck that she calls ‘Daddy.’ Sometimes the chain gets turned around and she can’t find the cross and then she says, ‘Here he is!’ He was a great dad.”
Maurice and Desmond Gordon are buried side by side in Maple Grove Cemetery in Kew Gardens, where the inscription on Desmond’s tombstone reads: “Family Love Is Everything.”
Aw, Paige is a miracle baby!
This is sad, but at the same time heartwarming. We wish Katisha and Dionne and the girls the best.
R.I.P. to Maurice and Desmond Gordon!