Family Hopes Increased Reward Yields Information

Tuesday, March 4th 2008, 1:14 pm
By: News On 6

It was an unthinkable Christmas Day crime.  An elderly couple murdered inside their Cherokee County home.  The News On 6's Chris Wright reports more than two months later, there are still no suspects or motive in the case.

Family members hope an increased reward will bring new leads in the murder of Jack and Elaine Denney.  The couple was gunned down in their house near Locust Grove, and authorities still are not sure who did it, or why.

It's a crime that has baffled investigators.  The bodies of 65-year-old Jack Denney and his 66-year-old wife, Elaine, were discovered by a family member on Christmas Day.  Neighbors described them as wonderful people, and no one has been able to offer any explanation for their murders.

"It's been difficult, but like I said together with our families, we're getting through it," said son-in-law Ladney Keener.

The Denney's daughter Sarah, and son-in-law Ladney, work in the Locust Grove school system.  They did not want to appear on camera, but say their family is still reeling from the loss.

"That's very, very hard.  I might be 40 years old, but I relied, I think, more on my parents more now than ever," said Sarah Keener.

The Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation originally offered a $10,000 reward for information that leads to the couple's killer, or killers.  But, a fundraiser in Locust Grove recently raised $5,000, all of which has been added to the award.

The family hopes $15,000 will be enough to generate some new leads, and they say are grateful for the community's support.

"Thank you just doesn't seem to be enough to express how we really feel," said Sarah Keener.

But, while an arrest would bring some closure, they say it won't bring back Jack and Elaine, the people who meant so much to their family, and to Locust Grove.

"That's why there's going to be and will be forever why there has been such a hole made in the community," said Sarah Keener.

Jack Denney had just retired from the Grand River Dam Authority three weeks before he was murdered.  His family says he was looking forward to spending his retired years with his wife.

Anyone with information about the case is urged to call the OSBI at 1-800-522-8017 or leave a tip on the OSBI Internet tip line at

Related stories:

12/31/2007  Search Continues For Clues In Double Murder Case 

12/26/2007  Still No Motive In Couple's Deaths 

12/25/2007  Elderly Couple Found Dead