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Malakov family pushes for Forest Hills street renaming

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A possible street renaming for Daniel Malakov, a Forest Hills orthodontist who was murdered in front of his 4-year-old daughter, would memorialize a loving father and successful dentist who poured his all into his community, area officials, family and residents said.

City Councilwoman Karen Koslowitz (D-Forest Hills) was expected to introduce a resolution at the Community Board 6 meeting this week to name 64th Road between 108th Street and Yellowstone Boulevard as “Daniel Malakov Way.” The community board was to vote on the proposal the same evening.

“He was a good man, but unfortunately his life was taken at a young age,” Koslowitz said. “This is something we can do so his daughter and his family can see her father was an important part of the community.”

Malakov, a 34-year-old Bukharian Jew from Uzbekistan, was shot to death in 2007 at the Annadale Playground on 64th Road at Yellowstone Boulevard. He also had his dental practice on 64th Road, about 50 feet from where he died.

Mazoltuv Borukhova, Malakov’s estranged wife who was a doctor, was sentenced to life in prison in 2009 for paying $20,000 to her uncle, Mikhail Mallayev, to kill Malakov following a heated custody battle over their 4-year-old daughter. Malakov had been awarded custody of his daughter just weeks before his murder.

The shooting happened in front of Borukhova’s and Malakov’s daughter, who is now living with her uncle, Malakov’s brother Gavriel Malakov, in Forest Hills.

Khaika Malakov, the victim’s father, said he hopes the street renaming will remind others in the neighborhood of the good example his son set.

“He would have been a good father for his daughter,” Malakov said.

The street renaming for Malakov would play an important role in the community’s healing and remind them daily of a role model who meant the world to so many Queens residents, said Albert Cohen, a Kew Gardens resident who was a close friend of the orthodontist.

“Our community misses him and loves him,” Cohen said. “He was loved by everybody. This was a guy who many people admired. Our younger generation wants to achieve the same level of professional accomplishments he achieved. He was a top student in dental school who did extremely well at Columbia University. He was a good person who took care of families who could not afford braces.”

Cohen, also a Bukharian, remembered his friend as a devoted father who would have done anything for his daughter.

“He was a superb father,” Cohen said. “People in the United States, especially immigrants, they come to the country and get immersed in the new environment. Sometimes they forget about their children because they’re working all the time. For Daniel, his daughter was of paramount importance. He died because he was trying to be a wonderful dad.”

Ivan Pereira contributed reporting to this article.

Reach reporter Anna Gustafson by e-mail at agustafson@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4574.

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