By Howard Monroe

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The gun violence epidemic is not letting up across the country and hours after a group of moms mourned their losses in public, homicide detectives were on the move as more teens died from gunshot wounds in Philadelphia.

“I will miss Mario forever, and I will always call his name and keep him alive,” Cheryl Pedro, who lost her son to gun violence, said.

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A mother in mourning six years after losing her son to gun violence.

“It doesn’t get any easier really,” Pedro said. “It’s always there. There’s always an ache in the heart that you just can’t get rid of.”

Cheryl Pedro lost her son Mario in February 2015. He was 34 years old.

Pedro was one of a dozen mothers who went to the Dell Music Center on Sunday morning to get a potted flower. This event was organized by Mothers in Charge and the Quaker State Funeral Directors Association.

The flower is a reminder that they are still mothers even though their children are no longer with us.

“You’re a mother, you’re always going to be a mother no matter what the ending, and we want to celebrate you,” Lisa Edwards, with Quaker State Funeral Directors Association, said.

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So far in 2021, 177 people have been killed in the City of Philadelphia, including 29-year-0ld Jayson Adams who was killed in February.

Photos of the victims are courtesy of the Philadelphia Obituary Project.

Adams’ mother, Teverin Deal, also always wears his picture around her neck, showing the pain never goes away.

Tonya Warden also wears a picture of her son around her neck. She lost her son, Tyron Alexander, in October 2020.

On her first Mother’s Day without her son, she has a message for those creating violence within their communities.

“I just ask you to put the guns down and try to find something positive to do in your life,” Warden said. “Because you’re hurting a lot of families.

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This event will be followed up with another event next month for Father’s Day.