COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – The sisterhood of the Mothers of Murdered Columbus Children gathered at the Rich Street Bridge to lock in their love for their children forever.

On Saturday, nine mothers added locks to the bridge in honor of children they lost to violence in Columbus.

For the fourth time, Mothers of Murdered Columbus Children have gathered at the bridge for the Locks of Love ceremony, which was first held last summer.

Each mother said their child’s name and the day they were killed. Then, surrounded by the other women, click the lock closed tight, saying, “locked and loaded.”

Malissa Thomas-St. Clair is the founder of the group. Her son was killed in 2013.

“It allows me to see the beauty of our legacy by taking back our loved ones because right now, violence was the last thing that was their notoriety,” she said. “And we are taking that back by locking in our love as a mother to our children.”

She said the locks will last forever even as they rust and age.

“If you think about the analogy of a person, we are not golden all the time,” Thomas-St. Clair said. “But we come out of the womb all shiny and new, we come out of the womb untainted and through the world, we weather, but it doesn’t mean we lose the love of a mother.”

The women gather at the bridge a few times a year for the ceremony, and each time, the mothers’ bond grows stronger.

“We are all in this together and nobody wanted this,” said Liana Stevenson, from Akron.

The women said the days never get easier without their children, but the sisterhood formed by the group empowers them, lifts them up, and keeps them fighting to put an end to gun violence.

So far this year in Columbus, there have been 64 homicides. The women said one is too many.