BUFORD, Ga. - A Gwinnett County mother and her toddler son was laid to rest Friday.
Natalie Nation, 30, and her 2-year-old, Cole, were both strangled to death on Easter Sunday at their home on Tybee Drive in Buford. Gwinnett County police believe 32-year-old Brandon Williams, Nation’s boyfriend, was the man responsible.
Loved ones gathered for their funeral in Crawford, Georgia.
Nation's longtime friend told FOX 5 she's in disbelief, but now upon reflection, she sees the red flags waving.
“I see someone who has her whole life ahead of her, so full of love and excitement. And Cole was the center of her world,” said Donna Kurhanewicz.
Kurhanewicz said Nation’s parents called police for a welfare check a few hours before the single mom and her toddler son were found in the home they shared with Williams and his father.
“They sent the police over there to make sure everything was safe and that there was no reason for them to be concerned,” said Kurhanewicz.
Late Tuesday night, Gwinnett County police responded to an inquiry from FOX 5 News about the welfare check request. Police said they have no records indicating it was ever made that night. However, public records show Gwinnett County police officers and sheriff’s deputies had responded to the home previously for DUI, obstruction charges, and involuntary comital calls.
Kurhanewicz said she and others plan to attend the court proceedings of Williams, seeking justice for their loved ones.
“I think as many people as can, will go to show support for Natalie and Cole so the jury knows these are people that were loved,” said Kurhanewicz.
Kurhanewicz said Cole’s grandparents often kept him overnights, but left him at the Buford home after a long day of Easter celebrations.
“He was born on Christmas and killed on Easter. And I have to believe that means that he just was for the brief time he was here an extra special angel,” said Kurhanewicz.
Friends have created an online account to help lay the mother and son to rest. If you would like to donate, click here.
“My understanding is they’ll be buried together in the same casket. Because Cole was the child she always wanted and they should be together,” said Kurhanewicz.
Williams remains at the Gwinnett County Detention Center without bond on murder charges.