Schoolmates and members of the Port St. John community said they are devastated from the news of four children shot who were shot and killed by their mother early Tuesday morning.
"I still feel like I'm in a bad dream," said cousin Demetrio Hall.
The Brevard County Sheriff's Office said Tonya Thomas, 33, shot and killed her two daughters, 17-year-old Pebbles Johnson and 13-year-old Jazzlyn Johnson, and her two sons, 15-year-old Jaxs Johnson and 12-year-old Joel Johnson. She then shot herself, deputies said.
Three of the 4 siblings attended Space Coast Junior Senior High, where it was announced over the loudspeaker, according to Jaxs' friend Malcolm Murray.
"It's unfair she had to take his life," Murray said. "I cried so much I cant cry anymore."
Murray said the family had their problems but when he last spoke to Jaxs, things appeared to be looking brighter.
"He said everything was good in the family and they were getting back the way they used to be, so for this to happen, I broke down because I didn't see it coming at all," Murray said.
Hall agreed, saying he knew the family had problems but didn't think it would result in their deaths.
"Jaxs had a few problems with his mother," Hall said. "I never thought it would escalate to the point that it did."
Despite reports of a domestic incident a few weeks ago and domestic battery charges against Thomas that were dropped in 2002, members of the community appeared shocked and surprised that Tonya Thomas would shoot her kids and then herself.
The pastor at the Real Church said the family attended services regularly, but had not been to church in the past few weeks.
"This was a great family, a great mother and four wonderful kids she was raising on her own," the pastor told Local 6. "I'm still overwhelmed I really don't know hot to feel I just know its a tragedy."
Friends of Jaxs said he didn't go to school on Monday, but it's unclear why. Both Challenger Elementary and Space Coast Junior Senior High School will have grief counselors on hand throughout the week for students.
Students and residents in the neighborhood are planning to hold a vigil in the neighborhood on Tuesday night. A memorial will also be held Wednesday at 7 p.m. at the First Baptist Church of Port St. John on Fay Boulevard.
"Brevard Public Schools is saddened to learn of the tragic deaths of four of its students. The police have released the students' names and crisis teams/grief counselors have been sent to the respective schools to help students, faculty and staff deal with this heartbreaking news," school officials said.
The Department of Children and Families also released a statement saying, "The Department and all of its employees extend their deepest condolences to the loved ones of this family and offer our full support to the Brevard County Sheriff's Office."
DCF officials also said they received a report on April 9 of "inadequate supervision," indicating a child in the home had been released from a detention facility but hadn't been picked up by a caretaker.
Watch Local 6 for more on this story.