A wave of sadness came over Normuria Neilly on Monday morning when she stumbled across a Facebook post about a mother and daughter who were found shot to death in a bedroom in their Nassau Village home.
She said she never suspected they were talking about her sister, 30-year-old Alicia Sawyer, and her 8-year-old niece, Ednique Wallace.
“I never thought it was my sister,” Neilly, 23, told The Nassau Guardian yesterday.
“I didn’t have a clue. I was saying, ‘What if that was my family?’ I would feel the same way these people feel about their loved ones.”
Neilly said her cousin came over to her house not long after.
She said he asked if anyone had called her.
“I said, ‘No, nobody called me,’” Neilly recalled.
“He told me to call my daddy, but my daddy was out on the boat. So, he told me to call my auntie or somebody. I kept asking him what happened.
“He was crying and he said, ‘They’re saying your sister and your niece got killed.’”
She said it was surreal to learn the truth.
“When he told me that, everything just left,” Neilly said.
“It was like my whole breath left my body.”
When asked what was going through her mind at that moment, she replied, “Why would you do something like that? Why would you take an innocent child’s life? Why would you take somebody’s life who never did you wrong?”
Neilly said her father is “holding on”.
“I called him and I could see the sadness on his face, but he told me he was holding on,” she said.
“He said he’s trusting in God.”
Neilly described the last 24 hours as “hard”.
“I don’t wish this on anybody,” she said.
“It’s really hard. It’s two deaths, you know?”
Neilly said she spoke with her sister four days ago.
She said their last words to each other were, “I love you.”
Neilly described Alicia as kindhearted.
“She would give you her last,” she said.
“She wasn’t a troublesome person. She stayed to herself.”
Neilly added, “Her favorite thing to do was to scare me. My favorite thing was to sit down and just crack jokes with her and talk about the old times.”
She said her niece was a “loving” child.
“Whenever she saw you, she would give you a hug and ask you how you were doing,” Neilly said.
The double murder is believed to be domestic-related, police reported.
Chief Superintendent Shanta Knowles said a man is in custody in connection with the double-murder investigation.