Less than a week earlier, former Gloucester resident Paul Frontiero III had intervened to help two women under assault from a man with a knife outside a Nashua, N.H,. apartment building.
Saturday morning, family members, friends and one of the women Frontiero died trying to help paid their respects and bid him their final farewells at his Gloucester funeral.
Ambulance corps and other emergency personnel joined in giving a hero's farewell to Frontiero, 27, who was living in Nashua but had also served as an emergency medical technician with a Boston-based ambulance corps.
He was also part of a mission group from Cape Ann's Holy Family Parish that carried out projects in Cevicos, Dominican Republic, and was planning to join the group for a return visit there later this month. His funeral Mass Saturday was held at St. Ann's Church, following a procession from the Greeley Funeral Home on Washington Street.
Police in Nashua, N.H., have told Frontiero's parents — Cathy Frontiero and Paul Frontiero Jr., of Riverview Road, Gloucester — that their son had seen a man threatening two women outside the apartment building where he lived on Sunday night, Oct. 9.
According to police, the assailant — believed to be a 19-year-old Nashua man who fled to the southeastern Massachusetts town of Wareham, then was arrested there last Monday night — held a knife to one woman's throat and Frontiero intervened. The assailant then attacked all three people, including — Jill Arnold and Kathryn Libby, both 29 and of Nashua.
Arnold suffered minor cuts, while Libby sustained more serious wounds, but has since been released from a Boston hospital.
Frontiero, however, died early last Monday at the Southern New Hampshire Medical Center in Nashua. The New Hampshire Chief Medical Examiner's office found the cause of death to be multiple stab wounds — with one stab wound to the heart. The medical examiner's office also confirmed the manner of death to be via homicide.
The 19-year-old Nashua resident accused of killing Frontiero remains held without bail in New Hampshire after being arraigned on two alternative counts of second-degree murder — the counts alleging that he knowingly and recklessly killed Frontiero in the assault.
Packer did not appear in Nashua District Court for his arraignment as expected, according to the Union-Leader of Manchester, N.H. The hearing was instead held via video broadcast from the Nashua police station.
Judge James Leary ordered that Packer be held without bail pending his probable cause hearing this week, despite a request from Packer's public defender to post bail at $50,000 cash or surety.