On March 26, 2015, Nicholas Figueroa was having a late lunch with a friend at Sushi Park, 121 Second Ave., when an explosion rocked the building. The blast killed Figueroa and Sushi Park employee Moises Locón, 27, injured more than 20 others, and leveled 119, 121 and 123 Second Ave.
He was a December 2014 graduate of SUNY Buffalo State with a degree in criminal justice. He was 23.
His parents, Nixon Figueroa and Ana Lanza, shared this message on the fifth anniversary of his death:
Now it has been five years since we lost our son.
We would like to thank everyone who has been so supportive, especially family and friends who help us to cope with our grief.
Our son was so full of life. All he wanted was to help people in all the ways he could, particularly by listening and being there for them. He would go out of his way to help a friend. It didn't matter what time it was. If you needed someone to talk to, he would be there.
His absence leaves an empty space because he was a motivator. He had a big heart for people and for life. He was smart and you could talk to him about anything. He was such a good listener. His soul is irreplaceable because he showed us there is more to life. He saw good in everyone and wanted to help.
If he were alive today, he would tell people to love life to the fullest. Enjoy every moment. Life is too short. He knew that, and that's why he was so full of life. He would tell us to take this time and be very grateful for your family and friends. And for all that you have.
Read more about Nicholas here.
Thank you to EVG reader Daniel.
Updated 8 p.m.
Late today, Mr. Figueroa visited Second Avenue and Seventh Street and placed flowers on the corner ...