Most of us will never lose someone we love to an act of violence...but for the last week family and friends of three family members that were murdered in their Cole Camp, Missouri home, have had to endure the loss of three loved ones to senseless violence, and the glare of publicity of an act that has blindsided them at the same time.
Donnie Luetjen and Sharon Luetjen and their granddaughter/daughter, Taron, were all found shot to death in their home in the sleepy German town of just over a 1,000 residents on Tuesday.
Taron had lived with with her grandparents since she was a little girl. The elder Luetjens adopted their granddaughter in 2002. Her father, their son, Terry was killed in a car crash in 1993.
As of Friday police said they have made no arrests. They won't talk about suspects, but a detective working the case says, "we believe we are getting closer to an answer."
Funeral services for the Luetjens will be held this evening (06-14-09) at 6 p.m. in the Cole Camp R-1 Gymnasium with visitation to follow.
Graveside services will be held tomorrow at 10:30 a.m. at Mt. Hulda Lutheran Cemetery, in rural Cole Camp.
Memorial contributions may be sent to:
Luetjen Music Scholarship Fund
C/O Fox Funeral Home
302 E Butterfield Trl.
Cole Camp, MO 65325
The statement said:
"At this time, we feel compelled to make a brief statement to those who genuinely have nothing but care and concern for our family and friends at this time of such a horrible loss.
We understand the media and press has a job to do and we respect that aspect. We're also greatly disappointed in the trash and negativity that has been portrayed and promoted by the media relating to this tragedy. This negativity is a majority of the reason why we have declined to respond to requests for statements and pictures in the past few days. Some agencies have been doing their homework, while others have been taking the easy way out in the name of "investigative reporting." In a few days, we may decide to get into more details, but that is still undetermined at this point. This is not the time or the place.
We also understand that the authorities have their job to do and we expect them to do that job as complete as possible in order to catch the horrible people that could have committed this brutal crime. It has taken everything in our power to try and stay out of the way so that they can conduct a complete and thorough investigation in order to obtain all the facts and evidence they may need for the case. We are relying on the fact that they will stop at nothing short of perfection. We have nothing more than the utmost respect and appreciation for all that they are doing.
What we need everyone to understand is that the family has a job to do as well. Our priority at this time is to make sure that our wonderful family is mourned and buried with as much peace and dignity as possible. They deserve nothing less.
This is a very hard and difficult time for our family and friends who loved them. We appreciate the outpouring of sympathy and support that has been shown to us. We ask that you keep us all in your thoughts and prayers during this time."
- Deborah R. Armenta and family