It marked the start of three days of services for Steven Pollard.
Pollard, 30, died Sunday when he fell through a gap on the Belt Parkway while responding to a car accident.
Hundreds turned out to pay their respects.
"At a time when people are tempted to get cynical and wonder where our heroes are, where sacrifice and selflessness is, all you've got to do is think about Steven Pollard," said Cardinal Timothy Dolan.
"We all hope that when our loved ones go off to work each tour they come back safe," said FDNY Commissioner Daniel Nigro. "But in the back of each family's mind is the knowledge that they may not."
The wake at Marine Park Funeral Home continues Thursday from 2: 00 to 4:00 p.m. and 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.
His funeral will be held on Friday at 11:30 a.m. at Good Shepherd R.C. Church at 1950 Batchelder Street in Brooklyn, New York.
WATCH: FDNY procession honors firefighter Steven Pollard
"Some people never get to experience the love we shared," Pollard's girlfriend wrote online Wednesday. "I was lucky to have it with the greatest man I will ever know. I love you so much. Rest in the sweetest peace."
Pollard comes from a family of firefighters. His father, Ray Sr., served 31 years in Brooklyn. His brother, Ray Jr., served 11 years in Brooklyn.
Pollard is the 1,151st member of the FDNY to die in the line of duty.
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