Local News

Neighbors of Franklin County decapitation victim hold vigil in remembrance

Posted March 10

Neighbors and friends of the Franklin County woman, who was murdered in her home Monday, held a vigil in her honor Friday night.

According to authorities, 18-year old Oliver Mauricio Funes Machada called 911 and admitted he killed his mother Monday afternoon. In that 911 call, he told an operator he was angry with his mother.

Authories said he attacked Yesenia Funes Machada with a knife, decapitating her. He then approached a responding officer with her head in his hand.

The gruesome crime shocked the community, and many attended the vigil to begin healing.

"It was a great remembrance of her," organizer Leona Smith said. "She was a mom, a wife, and she was our neighbor."

More than 100 people gathered at the front lawn where 35-year-old Yesenia Funes Machada lived.

There were candles and photos, and a local pastor shared a message.

"He talked about how communities need to come together when something like this happens and how we need to get to know our neighbors better," Smith said.

Those at the vigil remembered Machada and worked to support the family members left behind.

The accused killer's younger brother, Walter, attends Bunn High School and plays on the soccer team.

His teammates attended the vigil.

"As a team we can show he was a real friend to us, and we are here for him, no matter what," Edson Servin said.

It has been an emotional week for everyone.

"It hurts right now," Servin said. "I had to step out, catch my breath. It's really sad.

The soccer team is raising money for the family through t-shirt sales.

Other groups are also raising money to help return the victim's remains to her native country Honduras.


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