Family and friends try to deal with a Bixby woman's murder

Tuesday, August 24th 2004, 10:34 am
By: News On 6

A murder in Denver, Colorado strikes the heart of Bixby. Denver Police are trying to figure out who stabbed to death a young woman named Gina Gruenwald. Her family and friends in Bixby are just trying to figure out how to go on without her.

News on 6 crime reporter Lori Fullbright says Gina Gruenwald grew up in Bixby with loving parents, a brother and two little sisters. By all accounts, she was an incredible athlete, played basketball and was the star catcher for Bixby's runner-up champion softball team in 1994.

Her death is hard to grasp. Gina’s friend Charlsie Norton: "I'm still in shock. It's amazing to me that someone could take her from us and I wonder if they knew what they've really taken from us."

Gina dreamed of going to college, playing college ball, then moving to a big city and becoming a success. And, she found a way to make those dreams come true. Her job took her to Denver where, as far as everyone here could tell, she was happy. "It's so painful because her family and friends here don't know all the people she knew; don't know what was going on. She was known to make friends quickly and trust people quickly. We just don't who would do this or why."

Gina's body was found in a Denver neighborhood this weekend. She'd been stabbed to death. Her ID was missing and police don't think she put up a fight because of the lack of defensive wounds. Those who know her say she would've fought unless it was someone she knew or she'd been drugged.

Her loss is incalculable. "She adored her dog, her family. She was very much a family person and for her to be ripped away from us like this. One thing I can say for sure is she'll never be forgotten."

Gina's roommates in Denver told police they'd gone out to a club last week and when it came time to leave, Gina gave them her truck keys and she left with other friends. When she never came home, her roommates reported her missing. Her body was found Saturday in a breezeway next to a house.

Her family wants answers, wants to know who could do this and feel it's hard to get answers this far away.

They are currently making her funeral arrangements and a fund as been set up at Citizens Security Bank in Bixby in Gina's name to help.