A New York City woman who died fighting off muggers likely put up a struggle to keep her cell phone -- because it had romantic texts from her husband on it, the heartbroken spouse said yesterday.

"Nothing in the bag was so valuable -- she had a phone, an iPod and maybe $20," a weeping Shazam Khan said of his wife, Rabia Mohammed, 23, whom he watched get shot as they walked near their home Sunday night.

"She was very sentimental. She really cherished our text messages," said Khan, 29. "She has four cell phones that are full. When she doesn't have any memory left, she gets a new phone."

Cops and Khan say the couple, who were married last October, were walking on a street in the New York City borough of Queens at around 8:30 p.m. Sunday, on their way to Khan's mother's house, when three thugs demanded Mohammed's purse.

The killers came "out of nowhere," the husband said.

Click to read more on the newlywed's shooting from the New York Post