SOUTH PASADENA, Calif. - More than 400 people packed into the Holy Family Catholic Church Tuesday for the funeral of 5-year-old Aramazd Andressian Jr., whose body was found in late June after being missing for months.
Andressian Jr.'s mother, Ana Estevez, carried his hat into the church as friends and family said their goodbyes. South Pasadena Police Sgt. Matthew Ronnie said the boy's death even touched his department.
"We're moms, dads, aunts, uncles and can identify with the family, and feel the sense of tragic loss," he said.
MORE: Body of boy reported missing in South Pasadena found near Lake Cachuma
Authorities discovered the body of Andressian Jr. on June 30 near Lake Cachuma in Santa Barbara County. Police think the boy's father, Aramazd Andressian Sr., killed him to get back at his estranged wife because of a bitter custody battle.
"Thank you for bringing my baby home. It wasn't the way that I wanted, but he's home," Estevez said during the funeral.
The father was arrested the same day the body was found. Andressian Sr. pled not guilty to murder the next week.
Andressian Jr. was last seen alive on April 21 leaving Disneyland with his father. Andressian Sr. was found unconscious the next day in Arroyo Seco Park, unable to account for his son's whereabouts.
A public service will be held for Andressian Jr. at the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden Wednesday at 7 p.m.