Housekeeper: Hedwig Village murder victim 'took care of me and I took care of her'

HEDWIG VILLAGE, Texas (KTRK) -- As investigators work to identify suspects in the murder of an elderly woman in Hedwig Village, the woman's former housekeeper of 57 years said she was the kindest person she has ever known.

Moteel Susberry said she helped raise Janeil Hooten Bernard's two sons.

"She took care of me and I took care of her," Susberry said. "She was as sweet as she could be. She wouldn't harm a fly."

Susberry said Bernard was generous with her money, too.

"She bought me a car, a little yellow Subaru when those Subarus first came out, back in the '70s, maybe '76 or '78," Susberry said.

VIDEO: Police believe woman found murdered in Hedwig Village was beaten and stabbed

Susberry said she did most everything with Bernard, including traveling. She said she went on trips with her to New York City and to San Antonio.

"I'd tell her all the time, I'd say, 'Ms. Bernard, I appreciate what you do for me.' I said, 'I'm so glad that God put you in my life,' She'd say,'It works both ways. I'm glad he put you in my life,'" Susberry said.

Susberry said Bernard was an accomplished ballroom dancer who loved cats.

She said she received a knock at her door Tuesday afternoon from Hedwig Village police officers there to deliver the devastating news of Bernard's murder.

"That just wasn't right," Susberry said.

She wants justice.

"They need to be sent to the back of the pen by themselves for life with no parole," Susberry said. "That's what needs to happen. Or let me get a hold of them and I'll fix them."

Below is a statement from Kevin Bernard, the son of Janeil Bernard:

We would like to thank the Hedwig Village Police for their compassion and continuing dedication to this case as well as the HPD who is assisting. We also appreciate the media's assistance in keeping this case present in the public's mind and for respecting our need for privacy. The death of our mother is such a devastating, senseless and barbaric act that we have been at a loss for words. Hopefully with the continued police attention on this and the media attention, somebody somewhere will know what happened or overhear a conversation and turn this heinous criminal, or criminals, into the authorities so justice can be served.

The Hedwig Village Police Department asks for the public's help in solving this case. If you have any information that could help, call 713-461-4797.

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