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Mourners gathered Sunday night, at the Pleasant Gift Missionary Baptist Church near their Jennifer Hudson's Chicago home, to celebrate the lives of the actress' mother, brother and nephew, who were murdered a few weeks ago.
Carmen Williams, who was 7-year-old Julian Hudson's second grade teacher, read from his fellow student's journals.
"I'm sad he didn't get to be President," one child wrote.
"Julian was a role model, an academic whiz and a best friend," the teacher said. "You could look into his eyes and you knew he always had the right answer."
Shari Sweat, a cousin, remembered Jennifer's mom, Darnell Donerson, saying she was a woman who was proud of her academic background and loved the song, "From Out of Nowhere, Jesus Found Me." She called her "gentle, special and loving."
Rev. Quentin Washington recalled Jason Hudson as a caring, religious man, who had aspirations of becoming a minister. "They are all in Heaven having a hallelujah good time," he said. "Their lives ... were not in vain. Their legacies live on."
No one has been charged with the senseless murders, but police have classified Jennifer's brother-in-law, William Balfour, as "a person of interest."