Hundreds turned out at West Hills High School in Santee on Sunday to remember a slain 14-year-old girl.
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Aaliyah Johnson, 14, and her father Reuben Johnson, 56, were found dead on Saturday in their San Carlos home. The teenager's mother, Regina Johnson was arrested Saturday and is suspected of fatally shooting her husband and daughter possibly last Wednesday and then staying home with the bodies for three days.
On Sunday, nearly 200 students and their families gathered to remember Aaliyah. They wrote messages on poster boards and released balloons with fond farewells.
Family friend Anderson Hartfield told 10News, "I dont know how
It's going to be tough getting over this one."
"[Aaliyah] was really humble," said longtime friend Jenae Parlier-Ned. "I just can't believe this happened to her."
Police said the girl's mother was booked into jail on two counts of first-degree murder. She is scheduled to be arraigned on Wednesday. She reportedly called a relative in Washington state, saying her husband and daughter were dead.
"I never would have guessed that anything would happen to her," said Tyffannie Covey, another friend of Aaliyah's.
Covey, who said she had known Aaliyah since kindergarten, said she is shocked that the girl's mother will be charged with their deaths.
"Her mom used to be so sweet," added Covey. "We would always talk and then her dad always made me laugh. They were a really close family."
Aaliyah's 14-year-old boyfriend, Michael Alfaro, laid flowers at the front of the school on Sunday. Alfaro told 10News that the couple last texted late Tuesday night about her wanting to learn Spanish.
On Sunday, he tried to remain strong as he witnessed the presence of friends on the school's campus.
"I knew a lot of people were going to come here and support her because we all loved her," he said.
Her friends gathered for a group photo near the school sign which was covered with purple balloons, stuffed animals and flowers.
They had this final message for her: "We love you, Aaliyah!"
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