HOPEWELL, Va. (WRIC) — Family and friends were joined by members of the community on Tuesday morning for the funeral and viewing of a Chesterfield mother and her three children who were killed in a shooting earlier this month.
Shortly before 5 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 18, officers were called to the 4200 block of Laurel Oak Road for a reported disturbance at a residence in the area. The officers entered the residence to perform a welfare check and found four shooting victims. All four victims — 39-year-old JoAnna M. Cottle, 13-year-old Kaelyn M. Parson, 4-year-old Kinsey M. Cottle and 4-year-old Jayson L. Cottle — were pronounced dead at the scene.
The service was held at the Destination Church in Hopewell and began with the viewing at 10 a.m. before transitioning to the funeral service itself began at 12 p.m. The ceremony was open to the public with many in the community coming to pay their respects.
Following an investigation, police identified the suspect as 35-year-old Jonah L. Adams. Adams — of the 11400 block of Saint Martha Court in Waldorf, Maryland — was previously in a relationship with JoAnna Cottle and is the father of Kinsey and Jayson Cottle, according to police.
The funeral follows a community vigil that was held on Monday, Nov. 21, in which people gathered to honor the family who were killed in the shooting.
“We’re hanging in there but it’s tough,” said Steven Bradshaw, cousin to three of the victims. “We’re doing what we need to do to get through, to put them to rest … We know that there’s going to be a reason for this, and we may not know what it is but there is a reason.”
At last week’s vigil, Bradshaw said the family was working to support each other in spite of the tragedy.
“When you’re young and you’re at school the day before with your best friend … then all of a sudden they’re gone,” he said. “These kids are hurting. We just need to wrap our arms around them.”