James Gandolfini's Wife, Kids, Family Gather for Private Wake in NJ

Celebrity News Jun. 27, 2013 AT 8:30AM
James Gandolfini James Gandolfini Credit: Bobby Bank/WireImage.com

James Gandolfini's loved ones are saying goodbye. Ahead of the late Sopranos star's Thursday June 27 funeral service in NYC, his widow and infant baby daughter were joined by other family members and close friends for an invitation-only wake at Robert Spearing Funeral Home in Park Ridge, N.J. on Wednesday, the New York Daily News reports.

The beloved Emmy-winning actor's wife, Deborah Lin, was spotted with daughter Liliana, 9 months, entering the facility, with workers transporting huge floral bouquets into the space. Mourners paid their respects between 4pm until 9pm. (That evening, the lights on Broadway were dimmed in memory of the Garden State native, who earned a Tony nomination for his performance in God of Carnage.)

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Bob Price, married to a Gandolfini cousin, told the Daily News: "It's a nightmare for the whole family . . .It's a horrible, horrible thing, everybody is just devastated. "This man was everybody's hero. It's just the worst thing that could have happened."

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The iconic actor was vacationing with his wife, Lily and 13-year-old son Michael in Rome, Italy last week when he suffered a massive, fatal heart attack on Wednesday June 19. Paramedics were unable to revive him, and he was pronounced dead at age 51.

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"He was a genius," David Chase, creator of The Sopranos, said shortly after news of Gandolfini's death hit. "Anyone who saw him even in the smallest of his performances knows that. He is one of the greatest actors of this or any time."

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