ROCK ISLAND - Outside the Church of Peace in Rock Island, a group of people gathered to fight for just that, peace.
Leading their mission is a mother who knows the pain of losing a child.
"It just takes a piece of your heart that you just can`t get back you know, it`s just a feeling I just don`t want no other mother to have to endure," said Othea Stevenson.
One year ago, Stevenson son's Demar Bester was shot to death in a Rock Island neighborhood. He was 24-years-old.
Ever since then, Stevenson says she's done everything she can to prevent another life lost by gun violence.
"These young kids out here don`t have anything to do you know what I`m saying? We need to come together and start organizing some things for them to do after school," said Stevenson.
Family, friends, and neighbors released doves to symbolize the need for peace.
A bench was also dedicated in Demar's memory, a place for his three daughters to share and remember him by.
Stevenson says it will take more than sentiment to stop the violence and it takes more than what she alone can do.
"It takes more than just me it takes a village, so we have to come together," said Stevenson.
Demar's family has pushed for more lights and cameras to be put in the neighborhood. The city says they will be installed in the fall.
Police are still looking for Demar's killer.