Vigil for murdered Houston family

Added On February 11, 2014

A Chinese family of four were killed in the U.S. city of Houston on Jan. 30.
And the local Chinese community held a vigil to honor them on Saturday.
The family, who emigrated from China, were found dead at their house in the city's suburb of Cypress on Jan. 30.
All four were shot in the head, including 50-year-old Sun Maoye, his wife Xie Mei and their two sons, who were both less than 10 years old.
The local sheriff's office has ruled the killings are part of a murder case. However, investigators have not identified a suspect as so few clues have as yet been uncovered.
The case left Houston's large Chinese community, thought to number more than 24,000 people, shocked.
Houston is the U.S's fourth largest city. 
Around 500 people converged on Saturday afternoon on a grassy knoll in Cypress to observe a vigil for the victims.
"The Chinese community in Houston was shocked by this heinous crime and gravely concerned about public safety here. I call on all Chinese Americans to stand up for their rights and interests."
Elected officials, the county sheriff and a Chinese Consul stood side-by-side at the knoll to offer their condolences.
Fan Yong, on behalf of the Chinese Consulate in Houston, said the Consulate has helped to get in contact with the murdered family's relatives in China and issued a caution to Chinese living in the city.
SOUNDBITE (CHINESE): FAN YONG, Chinese Consulate in Houston
"Today, we come to attend the candlelight vigil to remember those we lost.  From everyone's faces, I read not only sorrow and anger, but also solidarity and strength. It showed the Chinese nation's traditional virtues of pulling together in times of trouble. I hope this virtue will be passed down to younger generations."
Russ Stevens, a co-worker of Sun Maoye at Cameron International, described him as a "problem-solver" and "the sort of guy we could always rely on."
After the hour-long vigil, some volunteers went to the murdered family's house, laying flowers, candles and teddy bears on the porch. They stood in silence in front of the two-story building.
A neighbor and friend of the family, Annelie Mciver, said the tragedy is unusual because it is normally a safe and peaceful neighborhood.
"I feel very sad. It is a big loss for us. We were shocked when we heard of the news. It was just unbelievable. We are actually going to celebrate the Chinese New Year with them just before that happened."
The sheriff's office is urging people who knew the family to come forward if they believe they can help with the investigation.
Houston Chinese Alliance, a non-profit group, has launched a donation drive for a reward for informants and to help cover the travel expenses of the victims' relatives.