CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — A community came together on Monday night for a vigil honoring a Chesterfield mother and her children who were killed in a shooting last week.

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.

Tears were shed by some in attendance at the Salem Church Middle School — where Kaelyn Parson was a student — during the vigil on Monday, Nov. 21. Hundreds gathered to light candles and sing songs in honor of the family.

“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.”

Bradshaw said he feels especially sad for Kaelyn Parson’s Salem Church classmates.

“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.”

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.

“Even though what happened on Friday was a tragedy, it’s brought our family all back together,” Bradshaw said. “It’s been the hardest thing to look in the backyard and the babies aren’t out there playing.”