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Funeral Service Held For Houston Area Family Of Eight Killed In Domestic Tragedy

Funeral services were held Monday for a family of eight who police say were killed by the mother’s ex-boyfriend inside a north Harris County home.

Photo of 8 caskets placed in limos The eight caskets are loaded into hearses after the service at Fallbrook Church.

 

Hundreds attended the service at Fallbrook Church in north Houston, about five miles north of where six children and two adults were killed Aug. 8.

Eight white caskets were lined up in front of the altar inside the 2,500-seat sanctuary, one each for Valerie and Dwayne Jackson and their children Honesty, Dwayne Jr., Caleb, Trinity, Jonah, and Nathaniel, the son of Valerie and their alleged killer, David Conley.

Cameras and recorders weren’t allowed inside per the family’s request.

There was crying but also singing and dancing as the lives of the family were celebrated.

At one point, a friend of Nathaniel’s was brought up to the podium. Marlon Moran lives on the same street the Jacksons lived on and used to play football and basketball with the 13-year-old.

He gave a pair of his favorite Nikes to a surviving family member in memory of his friend.

“Well, he always wanted the shoes,” Marlon said. “So I just decided that since I never had the chance to give in person, I should just leave them for him.”

A counselor at Aldine Independent School District, where all six children went to school, talked about each kid and their qualities. The founder of a substance abuse recovery program talked about Dwayne Jackson and how he overcame his addiction.

Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, D-Houston, praised the support by the community, but she also said government must do more to prevent tragedies like this.

“And so, questions have to be raised, which we ultimately hope will be resolved, on the court system, the system that deals with our children and the system of welfare checks,” Jackson Lee said.

The Harris County Sheriff’s Office, which responded to the massacre, for its part is reviewing the way it handled the incident.

In a statement, Sheriff Ron Hickman said deputies “acted with valor and courage on that day, and acted in earnest compliance with the law. As in any tragic incident there is always room for reflection, evaluation and improvement. To that end, we are conducting a review of the entire episode to ensure if there are changes necessary, or lessons to be learned that we are diligent in finding them.”

Fallbrook Church senior pastor Michael Pender said it was a difficult service.

“Just to see eight caskets in front of a place where we have worship throughout the week,” he said. “And it was very, very humbling to think that out of those eight caskets, six were very young children.”

At the end of the about 90-minute-long service, the caskets were taken out one by one.

Members of Nathaniel’s kids’ league football team – all wearing their orange uniforms – helped put them in hearses that were waiting outside the church.

Then the unusually long convoy drove off, escorted by police.

The family will be buried in La Crosse, Wisconsin.

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Florian Martin

Business Reporter

Florian Martin is currently the News 88.7 business reporter. Florian’s stories can frequently be heard on other public radio stations throughout Texas and on NPR nationwide. Some of them have earned him awards from Texas AP Broadcasters and the Houston Press Club. Florian is a native of Germany. His studies...

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