"Thank you for the outpouring of support and love," her family told PEOPLE. "It is deeply felt by Kendra's family and is carrying them through this difficult time."

By Caitlin Keating
September 10, 2015 12:55 PM
The Hatcher family

The family of the 35-year-old Dallas dentist who was fatally shot last week after exiting her car in her apartment building’s parking garage wants the public to know that she had a “huge heart.”

“Two of her passions were children and serving others,” Hatcher’s family writes in a statement to PEOPLE. “She helped so many people here and around the world, from building houses in Florida to providing medical care to children in Ecuador. We are very proud of all her amazing work, and it is our hope that justice will be served.”

According to her family, Hatcher was an intelligent, hardworking and fun-loving daughter, sister and aunt.

Hatcher, originally from Central Illinois, wasn’t just beautiful on the outside, her family writes: “Beauty also flowed from Kendra’s heart,” reads the statement.

Hatcher was salutatorian of her high school senior class and graduated from DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana, on a service scholarship.

She always wanted to serve in the medical field and settled on dentistry, which she studied at the University of Kentucky. Hatcher especially enjoyed working with children and would often tell her family stories about her pediatric patients.

While her family “will miss Kendra tremendously, especially her laugh and smiles,” and writes that they are “so thankful her 35 years were lived to the fullest,” they add that they can’t fully mourn and celebrate her life until “authorities apprehend the person(s) responsible for committing this senseless act.”

Kendra Hatcher
The Hatcher family
Kendra Hatcher
The Hatcher family

Last Friday, Dallas police arrested Crystal Cortes, 23, after police said they identified her as the driver of a vehicle seen in previously released garage surveillance video.

In an interview with police, Cortes, who has since been charged with capital murder, allegedly admitted to conspiring with an ex-girlfriend of Hatcher’s boyfriend at the time of her death, according to a report by WFAA, which obtained search warrants and affidavits.

Cortes allegedly admitted to cops that she drove an unknown male suspect into the garage, who allegedly shot Hatcher and took some items before the pair fled.

“We ask that everyone share the pictures of the suspect vehicle and get the word out. And we urge ANYONE who has any information to please come forward immediately,” her family writes. “This is how we can honor her best right now.”

The family has also set up a GoFundMe account for Hatcher’s funeral expenses and legal costs, including travel for her family, who live out of state.

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