NANTICOKE– The Luzerne County Coroner’s office confirmed Saturday that Gertrude Price, 97, was killed by blunt force trauma.
Detectives said Price, who lived alone, was killed by a burglar who broke in a basement window sometime after 10 p.m. on Thanksgiving in what is believed to be a random attack.
Michael Verazin, 80, has a bat and wasp spray ready in case anyone tries to enter his home close to the crime scene.
“I do check the neighborhood, a lot of lights, I keep lights on during the night, I have an outside light here I keep on,” said Verazin.
He believes drugs are at the root of a number of crimes in the neighborhood.
Other residents are doing what they can to help police crack the case.
The owner of the Hunters Depot, Kevin Grevera, is offering a $1,000 reward.
While donations are not officially being accepted until Monday, several local merchants and citizens have pledged a total of at least an additional one thousand.
“Sure I get angry, I would like to kick in doors and smash heads, but we cant do that, so it’s my hope that somebody will come forward, and we will get this solved,” said one of the donors, Vern Treat of Nanticoke.
Treat hopes the reward will let Price’s family know that people in Nanticoke care.
He added, “This town is full of good people who want to do the right thing.”