Family, friends pay respects to Toll Gate goalie Gianna Cirella

    The funeral procession for Gianna Cierra passes the East Greenwich Police Department, where Gianna's father is deputy chief. (WJAR/Family photo)

    Family and friends said their final goodbyes Tuesday to a Toll Gate High School soccer player who passed away from a rare blood infection.

    Mourners gathered for the funeral of 16-year-old Gianna Cirella in Warwick.

    The funeral procession drove past the East Greenwich Police Department, where Gianna's father, Stanley Cirella, is deputy chief.

    Mourners dressed in purple, Gianna's favorite color, and a police car was decorated in the color. An American flag flew from the ladder of a firetruck.

    State Sen. Mark Gee said it was a beautiful tribute to a beautiful person.

    "Very, very upsetting. It's sad when a young lady who was full of spirit and spunk, and I think we all want to remember her that way," Gee told NBC 10 News.

    After complaining of a sore throat, Gianna was diagnosed with pneumonia and then sepsis, a blood disease that attacks the organs.

    Gianna will be buried in Quidnessett Memorial Cemetery in North Kingstown.

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