Candlelight vigils were expected to take place Monday night in both Kitchener and London in memory of Beau Baker.

The 20-year-old was shot and killed last week following an interaction with police on Brybeck Crescent in Kitchener.

Friends describe him as humorous and good-natured, and say he had moved to Kitchener to escape struggles with alcohol, and was starting to turn his life around.

In a Facebook post, his mother wrote that she wanted to see the vigils focus on her son, and not on other “opinions or agendas.”

“Beau was a loving soul and I have to believe that justice will prevail in due course,” Jackie Baker wrote.

Among those planning to attend the vigil in Kitchener was Karyn Greenwood-Graham, whose son Trevor was shot dead by a Waterloo Regional Police officer in 2007, during a robbery of a drug store.

Graham had a history of mental illness and drug addiction.

Greenwood-Graham said hearing of Baker’s death left her with an urge to reach out to his family for support and guidance.

“I cried. I crumbled. And then I thought ‘I’ve got to reach this mother,’” she told CTV News.

After her son’s death, Greenwood-Graham started a group called Affected Families of Police Homicide.

She says the group now includes more than 20 members, who support each other through their most difficult periods – supports Greenwood-Graham says aren’t available in the wider community.

“I was doing well in my life, and this loss just put me into a state of disbelief and mourning that is still going on,” she said.

“It’s like having your leg amputated, and like you have to live with that.”

Last month, the group met with representatives of the Ministry of the Attorney General.

They presented a number of proposals, including practical experience for Ontario Police College students, as well as blood and urine testing for all people starting out at the school.

“We know change isn’t going to come quickly. I still have hope that there is going to be change,” Greenwood-Graham said.