JENKS, Oklahoma - Families are struggling to make sense of the deaths of a mother and her young daughter in Jenks. Police say evidence, including an elaborate note, points to a murder-suicide.

Parents on Friday night clutched their children tightly at a calm vigil after the terrible tragedy.

"It's such a tragic event," neighbor Travis Johnson said. "I mean, it just shocked us all when we found out, and so many people wanted to show some sort of support."

They prayed for Jaime Helms and her 3-year-old daughter, Blair, who died in what police call an apparent murder-suicide Wednesday afternoon.

Neighbors leaned on one another, many with their kids by their side.

"I've hugged them all a little tighter, and you can't fathom, you know how something like this could ever possibly happen to begin with," neighbor Angela Muly said.

Police said Helms tried to sedate Blair and her 5-year-old son, then put them in a van in the garage with the engine running. The 5 year old somehow made it out, and was rescued by Helms's ex who came home to find them in the garage.

Police found notes in the home, one written to Helms's neighbor.

Jenks Police Chief Cameron Arthur, said the note read:

"We are in the garage and will have passed by the time you read this. I don't want my ex to be the one to find us. I'm sorry to burden you, but I don't know what else to do. I was left with no other choice."

Arthur said there also was a note for police.

"She tries to somewhat justify and explain why she felt she had no way out and why she believes in taking her children with her, which is shocking," Arthur said. "Very disturbing, but at the same time, very useful, very helpful to our investigation."

Police interviewed the 5-year-old survivor on Friday. They said his interview and Helms' home is giving them clues as to what was going on behind closed doors.

"From the outside, it appears to be a very nice, well-kept neighborhood, beautiful home and so forth," Arthur said. "Inside, disarray to the point of pretty disturbing, in points that children may be living in that type of environment."

For now, police still believe what they thought from the beginning -- that the child died at her mother's hands.