CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WAVY) — More than nine thousand people attended Saturday’s memorial service to honor the three football players shot and killed at the University of Virginia last Sunday.

“As a mother and as a director of athletics, this tragedy has pushed me to my limit,” said UVA AD Carla Williams, who was among several speakers at the event.

Other speakers included UVA President Jim Ryan, head football coach Tony Elliott, and several members of the football team, who laughed as they recalled their memories and inside jokes with Devin Chandler, Lavel Davis Jr. and D’Sean Perry.

“I cherish his infectious smile,” said teammate Elijah Gaines of Lavel Davis Jr.

“He’d always make fun of me for being from New York, oh this and that. That connection I had with Lavel, he was like my blood brother,” Gaines said.

UVA President Jim Ryan said he didn’t know the three players before they died, but that he spent the last week learning who they were — as players, but more importantly, as people.

“I grieve for them. I grieve for their families. I grieve for their teammates and friends, I grieve for their coaches,” said Ryan.

Head football coach Tony Elliott said he wanted to offer condolences to everyone who witnessed the shooting, and then said to his fallen players:

“To my three young kings, I am eternally grateful. Thank you for bringing your light to the world. Your light will continue to shine bright for us in the days ahead”