Photos: A joyful and somber funeral for 15-year-old Precious Alex

A memorial for Precious Alex, outside the house where she was shot on April 1. 15-year-old Precious Alex was shot and killed April 1, 2014 while sleeping at her home in Anchorage's Mountain View neighborhood. Apr 10, 2014 Buy this Image
Loren Holmes / ADN
Dana Sweatt, Precious Alex's grandmother, is overcome with emotion at her granddaughter's funeral on April 10, 2014. 15-year-old Precious Alex was shot and killed April 1, 2014 while sleeping at her home in Anchorage's Mountain View neighborhood. Buy this Image
Loren Holmes / ADN
Daishon Alex, Precious' brother, and cousin Sharayne Townes-Sweatt at her funeral on Thursday. 15-year-old Precious Alex was shot and killed April 1, 2014 while sleeping at her home in Anchorage's Mountain View neighborhood. Apr 10, 2014 Buy this Image
Loren Holmes / ADN
Precious Alex's cousin, Sharayne Townes-Sweatt, kisses her. Approximately 400 people attended the funeral service for 15-year-old Precious Alex, who was shot and killed April 1, 2014 while sleeping at her home in Anchorage's Mountain View neighborhood. Apr 10, 2014 Buy this Image
Loren Holmes / ADN
Daishon Alex cries as he holds his deceased sister, Precious Alex, at her funeral on Thursday, April 10, 2014. 15-year-old Precious Alex was shot and killed April 1, 2014 while sleeping at her home in Anchorage's Mountain View neighborhood. Buy this Image
Loren Holmes / ADN
Approximately 400 people attended the funeral service for 15-year-old Precious Alex, who was shot and killed April 1, 2014 while sleeping at her home in Anchorage's Mountain View neighborhood. Apr 10, 2014 Buy this Image
Loren Holmes / ADN
Approximately 400 people attended the funeral service for 15-year-old Precious Alex, who was shot and killed April 1, 2014 while sleeping at her home in Anchorage's Mountain View neighborhood. Apr 10, 2014 Buy this Image
Loren Holmes / ADN
Dana Sweatt, Alex's grandmother, is overcome with emotion at her granddaughter's funeral. 15-year-old Precious Alex was shot and killed April 1, 2014 while sleeping at her home in Anchorage's Mountain View neighborhood. Apr 10, 2014 Buy this Image
Loren Holmes / ADN
A boy named Malachi overcome with emotion at the microphone. Many of Precious' friends attended the funeral. 15-year-old Precious Alex was shot and killed April 1, 2014 while sleeping at her home in Anchorage's Mountain View neighborhood. Apr 10, 2014 Buy this Image
Loren Holmes / ADN
Precious' brother Austin Cottrell speaking at her funeral. 15-year-old Precious Alex was shot and killed April 1, 2014 while sleeping at her home in Anchorage's Mountain View neighborhood. Apr 10, 2014 Buy this Image
Loren Holmes / ADN
Dana Sweatt, Alex's grandmother, sings at her granddaughter's funeral. 15-year-old Precious Alex was shot and killed April 1, 2014 while sleeping at her home in Anchorage's Mountain View neighborhood. Apr 10, 2014 Buy this Image
Loren Holmes / ADN
Approximately 400 people attended the funeral service for 15-year-old Precious Alex, who was shot and killed April 1, 2014 while sleeping at her home in Anchorage's Mountain View neighborhood. Apr 10, 2014 Buy this Image
Loren Holmes / ADN
DeMetra Alex, second from left, sings at her daughter's funeral on April 10, 2014. 15-year-old Precious Alex was shot and killed April 1, 2014 while sleeping at her home in Anchorage's Mountain View neighborhood. Buy this Image
Loren Holmes / ADN
Laurel Andrews,Loren Holmes

Relatives and friends of slain teenager Precious Alex overflowed from the church where her funeral service was held Thursday, April 10 in the Anchorage community of Mountain View. Speakers at the service painted the picture of an intelligent, intensely loyal, and caring girl who was deeply loved by all who knew her. They also implored the audience to change -- to give up on violence, and to better the community.

The service was held at New Hope Baptist Church, and the building’s nearly 300-person capacity was pushed to its limits. Additional seating was provided in the choir section and downstairs in a foyer that broadcast the service on a television monitor. Some people chose to stand in the church doorway.

A viewing of Alex in a half-open casket adorned with flowers, a sheer pink fabric and woven Samoan mat was held before the service. Alex was dressed in a tiara and a pink sequined dress. As the viewing began, grandmother Dana Sweatt began to shake and hyperventilate, causing a flurry of commotion in the front of the church. Medics were called and the viewing stopped while she was taken out on a stretcher by the Anchorage Fire Department. She returned before the service began, rejoining the family seated in the front row.

Hundreds poured into the church for the viewing as ushers scrambled to keep people from overflowing the room. With so many people waiting to see Alex, the viewing had to be cut short before the service, and it was taken up again after the service concluded.

Read more: Church overflows with emotion during service for slain 15-year-old Precious Alex