Bronx community pays final respects to beloved, influential karate instructor
Loved ones and community members gathered in Throgs Neck Monday to pay their respects to the life of a beloved karate instructor.
Jessica Fuentes-Rivera, who also went by the name Shihan China Fuentes, was instrumental in teaching and imparting her love of karate on young Bronx residents for more than 20 years.
Family members said they were with the outpouring support of the community.
"Most people would remember the amount of time she was patient, and loving, and supportive, not only of our family, but other families," said her son Joseph Fuentes.
"She loved the people that she worked with and what she did, and people are returning that by showing her overwhelming love and support," said her husband, Joseph Fuentes.
Fuentes-Rivera owned Excel Martial Arts with her husband, where they helped to impact and teach their love of karate to children not only in the Bronx, but in Brooklyn and Westchester as well.