Four-month-old Cora was recently left motherless when her twenty-seven-year-old mother was shot and killed in the line of duty. The baby has been left under the care of her father who, like most men, doesn’t know much about raising newborn babies. Well-wishers are coming together to help the father raise the baby by providing him with the most necessities that the little girl will need to survive.
Lesly Zerebny, Cora’s mother, had been a police officer with the Palm Springs Police Department. She had been around for just one and a half years and was trying to settle in with her family which now included the new baby.
When Lesley joined the department, she was assigned to Jose Gilbert Vega, a veteran officer who had worked in the police force for more than thirty-five years. The man was about to retire when he died in the line of duty.
Lesly had just returned to work from her maternity leave when she was called upon to respond to a domestic disturbance in the area. The woman left her husband and baby with all intentions of returning as soon as she could, but little did they know that it was the last time they would see her.
Zerebny partnered up with Vega and another officer, and they went to check out the source of the disturbance. It seems as though they did not know that their culprit was armed. The three approached the man’s screen door where they started a conversation with him, trying to determine what was going on.
They must have angered the man because he suddenly opened fire on the three of them through the screen door. Leslie and her partner were shot badly, and sadly they did not survive. The third officer suffered major injuries and was hospitalized for some time. He was released recently and is still recovering.
The shooter was identified as twenty-six-year-old John Felix. He was arrested later after engaging in another shootout with police officers. He will face charges for murders of both Leslie and her partner. The death of the two is one of the rarest incidences of police officers losing their lives on duty. In fact, it is the first time in fifty-two years that the department had lost its officers in the line of duty.
Leslie’s husband has been left with the baby, and he has to do all he can to raise her as required. One Ashley read about the incident on social media and knew that she had to find a way to help the family. She reached out to the dad and asked whether he could accept donated breast milk. When the family said yes, she gathered as many mothers in California as she could and convinced them to donate some breast milk for the poor baby.
In just one day, Ashley had gathered more than five hundred ounces of breast milk. This was going to last little Cora for about a month. The milk will be screened and tested for any issues before being sent to the family in coolers. As the families mourn their losses, the world is called upon to pray for them and assist in any way they can. We can only hope that justice will be served to the killer who left Cora motherless.