Funeral Held For Five Children Killed By Mary Ann Holder

6:39 PM, Dec 2, 2011   |    comments
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Pleasant Garden, NC -- Family, friends and community members gathered at the Pleasant Garden Baptist Church to say goodbye to five lives cut short by an act of violence yet to be understood.

More than 1,500 people gathered at the church. Many mourners included children, teenagers and teachers.

Student and friend Brooke Bex said, "It takes your breath away. I never thought I'd see my friends in a casket at that age."

Another friend, Emily Walker, added, "Just a week ago, I was talking to them and now they're laying there in the caskets and getting pulled away...about to get buried...We'll never be the same again."

Adam Couch was a pallbearer for Dylan Smith. He said he choked up when the family asked him to be part of the memorial. 

"I never would have thought in a million years I'd be carrying my best friend to his grave, but I'm honored to do it," Couch said.

PHOTOS: Victim, Suspect In Pleasant Garden Shooting

Friday, the day of the funeral, was also Makayla Woods' 16th birthday. To honor her birthday, everyone in the church sang her "Happy Birthday."

Ashley Nance, one of Makayla's friends said, "I know she was looking forward to her sweet sixteen...every girl does. I thought the singing was really sweet and I know she would have really appreciated it. I've never had that many people sing Happy Birthday to me, so I bet she really enjoyed it."

Investigators say Mary Ann Holder shot and killed herself and five children last month.  Investigators say Holder killed her two sons: Robert Dylan Smith, 17, and Zachary Smith, her niece and nephew: Hanaleigh Suttles, 8, and Richard Brian Suttles, 17, and Makayla Leigh Woods, Robert's 15-year-old girlfriend.

The reason for the shootings has puzzled the community, but investigators believe it all happened because of an affair Holder was having.








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