Visalia pastor shares family's message after tragic death of 2-year-old

VISALIA, Calif. (KFSN) -- "There's not much you can say, so we sat and we were together," said Gateway Church Visalia pastor Ed Kemp.

Kemp says family is speechless after 2-year-old John Weir's life was taken. The child was abducted Friday night by his father Steven Weir of Atwater.

"The family is devastated. they have lost a dad, a father, they have lost a son and it is a really difficult time," Kemp said.

A statewide Amber Alert was issued Saturday morning. The search came to an end nearly two days later in Tuolumne County.

RELATED: 2-year-old boy and father, subjects of Amber Alert, found dead in Tuolumne County

Monday morning detectives announced they found the bodies of John and Steven.

The community at Gateway Church is now doing their best to uplift the family.

"You don't replace people, but you can be there to put a hand on a shoulder to say an encouraging word and do whatever we can," Kemp said.

Action News spoke to John's mother, Sarah Weir, earlier this week when she described her son.

RELATED: 'My worst nightmare come true:' Mother of abducted 2-year-old pleads for son's return

"Sweet, he's super smiley and loves to play with dump trucks and his cousin Lincoln," she said.

Detectives have not yet revealed the circumstances of their deaths.

Sarah told Action News Saturday she and Steven were going through a divorce and he had been aggressive and emotional.

Kemp shared a message on behalf of the family for anyone struggling with mental health issues.

"They just want to make sure that people understood that if you struggle with an issue, don't sit in the rubble of the difficulties. Start to rebuild and just take one step, just do one thing and attempt to take a step towards health and wholeness," he said.
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