ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- For the first time since an elderly Rockford woman was found brutally murdered in her southeast side home, the family of the victim is speaking out about what many call a random attack on their loved one.
A faded Polaroid picture is the only thing Nathan Hughes has to remember his mother, Ocie Hughes. Her son says, he hasn't been allowed back into his mom's southeast side home since Thursday, when the 85 year old was found dead in a pool of blood
“I've been on my knees everyday day asking god to help me through this," says Hughes.
The family grew up in the Martha Avenue home that has now turned into the scene of a murder investigation. Family members say there are so many unanswered questions considering Ocie never
opened her door to strangers, and that there was no sign of forced entry into her home.
“This should be a wakeup call to the community. You need to take more precautions to keep your house safe because there is a lot of evil out here walking the street and you never know when it’s going to strike," says Hughes.
Ocie lived in the home for more than fifty years and her son says she helped co-found the Church of Refuge on West State Street. He says he'll remember his mother as a devoted Christian
“She was a godly woman; we read scripture together and prayed together. She helped a lot of people both inside the family and outside the family; she was a kind and loving and giving person. My mother's body, her physical body is dead but her spirit is with the Lord,” says Hughes. He adds that he is confident the police will track down his mother’s killer.
Ocie Hughes leaves behind three grandchildren and several great-grandchildren. One of her granddaughters is married to a detective on the Rockford Police Department.