Busloads of Marlins players, coaches, and former players were present at St. Brendan's Catholic Church.
Fans gather around a memorial for Miami Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez outside Marlins Park stadium, Wednesday, Sept. 28, 2016, in Miami. The event is being held privately for those closest to the former Miami Marlins star that was killed early Sunday morning in a boat accident off Miami Beach.
The emotional service seems to have gotten the most of the Marlins players, who played poorly against the Mets in a 7:10 p.m. game last night.
Maria Arias, the pregnant girlfriend of recently deceased Miami Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez, made her first public appearance since the player's fatal boat crash at his funeral on Sunday.
Shortly after the 32-foot boat owned by Fernandez crashed early Sunday, the Coast Guard said a lighted buoy that marks the channel opening at the end of the jetty was working properly. The Marlins lost 5 to 2.
Fernandez was loved in the Cuban community in Miami they related to his escape from Cuba and the island's communist government.
A Miami bar and restaurant is confirming that Miami Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez was a patron at the establishment before he and two friends were killed in a boat crash. You have a 24-year-old who is on top of the world, and we're walking behind his hearse. Fernandez was killed in a weekend boating crash along with two friends.
The private service drew about 300 mourners, who almost filled the large sanctuary at St. Brendan Catholic Church in Miami.
A private funeral will be held today for family, friends, and players. Many in the crowd of about 1,000 chanted "Jose!" People could be seen lined up for blocks and many said they felt compelled to come because of Fernandez's popularity as a baseball player and a hero to many in the Cuban-American community.
Authorities are investigating the cause of the crash early Sunday into a rock jetty off South Beach.
Fernández, 24, and two other men were found dead after their boat was discovered at the entrance of Miami Harbor, said Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission spokesman Lorenzo Veloz. In addition to Fernandez, Emilio Jesus Macias, 27, and Eduardo Rivero, 25, also died in the crash.
In a news release Thursday, Hillsborough County School District officials said the jersey was in the dugout during the vigil in his memory at Alonso High School. He was National League Rookie of the Year in 2013 and set a single-season Marlins strikeout record this year with 253.