Saturday benefit to remember Danville woman slain in December

Saturday benefit to remember Danville woman slain in December

Sharon Pierce can't think about her niece, Jamie, without tearing up.

"She was an exceptional person," the Tilton woman said of Jamie Yanders Sternberger. "She always put everybody before her, and she would do whatever she could to help anybody."

Family and friends are holding a benefit to remember the 40-year-old rural Danville woman, who was the victim of a murder-suicide in December.

It will begin at 1 p.m. Saturday and go to midnight at the Vermilion County Fairgrounds west of Danville.

There will be food, drinks and music, starting at 1; auctions and kids' activities at 3, raffle drawings at 9 and band performances at 7 and 9:30.

Organizers said the event also is being held to raise awareness about domestic violence and money for the woman's two teenage sons, Stetson and Dakota Winters. The Jamie Yanders Sternberger Fund has been established at Teepak Credit Union in Danville for donations.

Ms. Sternberger's body was discovered in her mobile home on Greenwood Cemetery Road on Dec. 29. She had been shot to death.

Authorities believe she was killed by Michael Penrose, 43, who had an address near Rockville, Ind., but had been living with Ms. Steenberger for six months. Mr. Penrose's body was found later that evening in an undisclosed location in Parke County, Ind. He died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Pierce said her niece, an employee at the UPS Store in Danville, was a single mother. The youngest of three daughters, she also helped care for her mother.

Now her sons, 19 and 16, are living with their grandmother in Westville, Pierce said.

"It's been especially hard on them," she said. "They haven't been able to return to their home because that's where their mother was murdered."

Kim Hufford, a benefit organizer and Ms. Sternberger's cousin, said her large, close-knit family always knew what a kind and giving person she was. After her death, they learned that others felt the same.

"We've been amazed by how many people knew her and how many lives she touched," Hufford said.

"Everyone who knew Jamie thought she was the kindest, sweetest person. If she thought someone needed something, she would give it to them."

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