Friends remember: Shaliza Dewa, Johannes van den Hende and their children Piers, Marnix and Margaux, who were all killed on flight MH17. Photo: Supplied
He was Dutch and she was Malaysian, and seven years ago they moved to Australia, choosing to raise their three children in Melbourne's suburbs.
Grief: Children at Sunday's service. Photo: Getty Images
On Sunday, about 700 people gathered in the Melbourne suburb of Eynesbury to remember the lives of Shaliza Dewa, Johannes van den Hende and their children Piers, Marnix and Margaux, all killed on flight MH17.
The family had been returning from holiday in the Netherlands, where Johannes (know as Hans) was born, when it was shot down on Friday.
As mourners joined in an outpouring of grief, family friend Sharon Lee read a statement to the gathering sent by Ms Dewa's family in Malaysia.
''It's heartening to know that our daughter and sister and family were thoroughly welcomed into your community and country,'' it said.
''Hans and Shaliza always spoke glowingly of the glass of wine, the cold beer and the cuppa they shared with many of you.
''Piers, Marnix and Margaux always spoke positively of their awesome Aussie mates and the fun adventures they had.''
Those in the community who had never met the family also joined in laying flowers and lighting candles.
Students from Bacchus March Grammar, which all three children attended, stood alongside 15-year-old Piers' soccer teammates from Melton Phoenix Football Club, and members of the Melton Swimming Club, with whom 12-year-old Marnix swam.
Members of the audience were invited to share their memories of the family, and they recalled meeting Shaliza when she first lived in Australia, as an exchange student at an Elsternwick college in the 1980s, and of the ''radical spiky hair'' she had at the time.
Schoolchildren remembered Margaux, aged 8, as have an ''imaginative personality'' and Marnix as being an ''inspiring artist''. A school friend of Piers said he was a ''down-to-earth kid'' who always had a positive outlook on life.
A white balloon for each of the family members was released at the end of the vigil.
The Department of Foreign Affairs and trade has identified 28 Australians citizens who were on board flight MH17, with at least another nine Australian residents also killed.
It emerged on Sunday that a 24-year-old aerospace engineer whose dream was to journey to Mars as an astronaut was among the passengers.
Fatima Dyczynski's life seemed impossibly accomplished for someone so young - a promising innovator, she founded her own technology start-up with a vision of making space accessible to anyone.
She had travelled to more than 40 countries, played guitar in a rock band and had learnt kung fu from Shaolin monks in China. She spoke English, German, French, Dutch and Polish.
But her life ended on Friday after she boarded the flight from Amsterdam, en route to join her parents who lived in Perth and take up a consulting job at IBM on Monday.
Her colleagues described her as ''brightly outspoken, ambitious and incredibly motivated'' in a message posted on the website of the company she founded, Xoterra Space.
''Fatima was energetic, full of life and her dreams reached to the outermost of space,'' the message read. Her ambition and optimism was reflected in the last comment she posted to Facebook: ''One real good thing is better than thousand things of mediocrity''.