Vigil held for local drowning victims - WSMV Channel 4

Vigil held for local drowning victims

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) -

The community of Cromwell Hills came together today in memory of two 11-year-old boys who drowned nearly two weeks ago.

Dozens of people crowded around a memorial cross for Kentory Ray and Thomas Ruffin.

Family members say it's been a difficult couple of weeks, but they know both are in a better place.

"Like for the past few weeks it's just been the only thing on my mind."

Siblings of Kentory and Thomas spoke out about their brothers, nearly 2 weeks after their deaths.

"He was smart and talented," said Tyrel Williams.

"He was sweet and compassionate like, he really cared for this family and his friends."

Kentory and Thomas went missing on September 22nd while playing near South Chickamauga Creek.

Search crews found both bodies the next day.

"It was heartbreaking. I was shocked," said DeShayla Rice, Cousin of Thomas.

"It was just hurtful it was just painful. If you have kids you can imagine," said Tasha Williams, Thomas' Step-Mother.

Williams says the family has seen overwhelming support after such a great loss.

Today was no different as the families gathered to hold a vigil in memory of the two 11-year-olds.

"A lot of people showed up. I didn't know it was going to be this many people," said Nikki Smith.

Both families said this vigil provided the closure they needed.

"You can't believe he's gone but all you've got is good memories."

I know he's in a better place, that he's an angle up in heaven with God," said Williams. "Even though he's gone, he's still bringing everyone together and that's what I just love. He's still working his magic."

Williams says more than 450 people attended to the funeral.

She says that proved how much both boys were loved in the community.

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