Grandparents of homicide victim clinging to faith

SMITH COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - By Layron Livingston - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - bio | email | Twitter

SMITH COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - Who killed a young East Texas woman remains a mystery, but the healing has begun for those who loved Amanda Anderson.

"We want to remember Amanda and her family," said one faculty member. TJC students and staff came together for a moment of silence in honor of Amanda. She was found shot to death in her Chapel Hill home earlier this week.

There was no silence at the Anderson's home Friday, as investigators continued to solve the violent crime.

Family members say Amanda would have turned 20 next month. Amanda's grandfather says keeping busy with activities, like leveling his travel trailer, is helping him deal with the loss of his granddaughter.

"It gets your mind off the tragedy itself," said Myron Anderson.

He is making more room for more family members headed to East Texas to grieve.

"The tears come," he said. "The tears flow. We can't hold them back."

"I adored her," said Delores Anderson, Amanda's grandmother.

Delores says Amanda was one of the youngest of her grand kids. She said she and her granddaughter talked about the future just a few short days ago.

"I said, 'What are you going to do,' and she said, 'Well, I would like to be married, I'd like to have children,' and then I started talking about the Lord, and she always served the Lord," said Delores.

"[She was] such a fine girl. To be taken out so tragically is just unthinkable," said Myron.

Investigators surveyed the home, Friday morning. Later they will recreate the crime scene.

Amanda's younger brother found the back door broken in and his sister's body in her bedroom, Wednesday night. Delores says she ran to the house when she found out what happened.

"[My grandson] was in the police car and he was crying so hard," said Delores. "It was so hot...and I pulled him out of the car in my arms."

"He had such a love for [his sister] and such a devotion to her...and then to find her in the condition that he found her in is beyond belief," said Myron.

Myron says his own home was broken into about a month ago in the same cul-de-sac.

He says most of the people who come down the road are friends or family.  Occasionally, others drive down, discover it's a dead-end, and go out.

"Evidently, somebody came down and kind of cased and saw, but we can't imagine that someone would do this," he said.  "She was such a sweet girl."

Investigators are keeping a tight lid on the details.

"God judges all things, and so we know that God will take care of it," said Myron.

The Anderson's are holding tight to their faith.

To help defray funeral expenses, The Amanda Anderson Memorial Fund is now open at Beacon Federal Credit Union in Tyler. For more information on making a donation, call 888-815-3800, ext. 2000.

Visitation will be held Sunday 2 p.m. - 6 p.m. at Tyler Gospel Chapel, located on Highway 31 East in Tyler.

Funeral services will be held at the same location at 2 p.m. on Monday.

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