BRAINTREE, MASS. (WHDH) - Hundreds of community members gathered to remember a beloved school nurse who was shot and killed at her Braintree home last week.

Friends and family members held a candlelight vigil on JFK Memorial Drive for 59-year-old Laurie Melchionda Monday evening in honor of her dedication to the towns she served and in memory of a woman whose life ended too soon.

Mechionda served as the Director of Health for Weston Public Schools and a former school nurse in the Braintree school system.

Organizers of the vigil said it was a way for people to come together and remember the legacy she left behind.

Her three children spoke at the vigil and shared stories of their mother’s warmth and compassion.

“As beautiful as my mom was. The situation was not beautiful. We got sucker punched pretty hard this week but, we get back up and we keep fighting because that is what she would do for us,” her son said. “She pushed us to accomplish our goals, to better our own lives, and to better the lives of others. She was a force of good in the world and that is what we will continue to do and continue to strive for so that we may carry out the work that she put in.”

Many who attended showed up sporting her favorite color — purple.

The Town Hall and surrounding trees were also adorned causing her son to remark, “Mom, you managed to decorate the town.”

Melchionda was fatally shot while answering the door at her home by a former neighbor, 61-year-old Robert Bonang. 

Bonang posed as a delivery driver and was carrying a box with holes cut out for his rifle, according to authorities.

He has been arrested on murder and firearms charges and is currently being held without bail.

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