Fresno, Calif. - 37-year-old Mark Gassett was one of the victims shot and killed in Tuesday's tragic shootings near downtown Fresno was honored tonight by friends and family with a balloon release and candlelight vigil.
The pain is still very real for his family members as they try to cope with his loss. They know the next chapter of this tragic experience will be heading to court to see the man accused of killing Gassett and three others.
For the friends and family of Mark Gassett the last two days have been gutwrenching after Fresno police say Gassett was one of three white men randomly shot and killed by Kori Muhammad.
"Right now the way I feel i despise the man. he took my only son. that was my pride and joy and why I don't know," said Rosie Wagner Mark's Mother.
While the pain was evident, Thursday evening provided a release. Balloons with messages of love for Mark floated into the sky.
"He'd love it. he'd be overwhelmed. we are all overwhelmed by the turnout it's great," said Mike Mudgett, a family friend.
The show of support for Gassett's family and two young sons he leaves behind proved to be a light during a time of darkness in Fresno's history.
"Just the thoughtful prayers and everything mean the world to us," said Lisa Gassett the mother of Mark's children.
Gassett's family says this night was about more than just Mark, but other victims police say were also killed by Kori Muhammad.
"I'm just so, so, sorry we have to deal with all this. it's not fair. it's not fair to us at all," said Wagner.
Now, with a burning faith
"father god provide them with the strength, the peace, the comfort, to go forward," a woman prayed at the vigil.
They are now praying for justice as suspected killer Kori Muhammad heads to court.
"it's going to be hard, but in my heart i hope there's justice," said Lisa Gassett.
"I don't know, maybe with god's help one day i could forgive him, but i don't know," said Wagner.
Family members of Mark Gassett are hoping to connect with the families of other victims to help support one another going forward.
Kori Muhammad will make his first court appearance Friday morning.