Folks, this is a story that is close to my heart. I was not a friend of this young lady but I knew her and I went to school with her. She was stabbed to death literally 30 seconds away from me. I live one block away from where she was stabbed and I drove up to the police scene just a few hours after this horrible murder happened. But now this story has gotten national coverage and it’s insane — because this terrible murder happened just 30 seconds away from where I’m currently sitting. I am not trying to make this about me because that would be terrible — I’m just letting you know ONE REASON why I feel compelled to report this story.
I never was a friend of her but I talked to her a few times throughout the years. She rode my school bus and went to the same school as me. I am good friends with a guy who was practically best friends with her. I never knew that she lived just 30 seconds up the road from me until a few days ago when police surrounded the house where she was killed. She is, as you can very easily see, an extremely gorgeous woman…And she was truly very kindhearted, and I can confirm that from the few times that I talked to her. Very nice girl and very pretty as well. Sad to see such a good person die so young. Heartbreaking.
Here’s a report from the NY Post:
The teenage granddaughter of late country music pioneer Jean Shepard was stabbed to death and the songwriter’s husband was also knifed during a bloody rampage in their Tennessee home, according to published reports Monday.
A third person was fatally shot in Saturday’s early morning attack at the Shepard’s home on Elnora Court in Hendersonville, Tenn., the Tennessean reported.
Police received a 911 call at about 3 a.m. and soon arrived at the residence, which had been turned into a slaughterhouse, officials said.
Cops discovered Benny Birchfield, the 79-year-old husband of the legendary country crooner, with puncture wounds to his body in the front yard, police said. Birchfield allegedly told cops that he had been “stabbed.”
Officers then found the butchered body of Shepard’s 18-year-old granddaughter, Icie Hawkins, inside the home along with a friend, Travis Sanders, 21, who had been fatally shot.
Police told News 2, a local TV station, that Hawkins lived with her grandfather and she and Sanders knew each other.
Investigators stopped short of releasing a motive, but said the attack was “isolated incident” and the community was not in any danger.
News 2 interviewed neighbor Michael Gay who called Birchfield “a great guy.”
“He kind of told me a little about himself, but mainly the past couple months, since his wife passed, we tried to do what we could to help with food or whatever to let him know we are here to help,” Gay told the station.
Jean Shepard, who died in September at the age of 82 from Parkinson’s disease, was considered a pioneer for women in country music, releasing 70 singles during her illustrious career.
Like I said, yes, I knew Icie [as acquaintances] — but one thing I did not know about her is that her grandmother was a country music legend. The Nashville, Tennessee-region is nationally known as the place for country music — so it’s not a surprise that she was the granddaughter of Jean Shepard. But for a girl like her, who is tremendously beautiful and is related to such a famous music legend — it’s unbelievable how humble and truly kindhearted, soft spoken, and pure she was. God Bless you, Icie Hawkins. Rest easy in Heaven, sweet girl.
I live on La Bar Dr. in Hendersonville, TN and if you look it up — you can see that is just mere seconds away from the home in which this horrible stabbing happened. As you read, her granddad did his best to save her as he shot down the murderer. Please keep her family and closest friends in your warmest and deepest prayers. I, personally, am okay and I’m not shaken by this. Yes, it’s super sad and I am shell-shocked to see something like this [that occurred 30 secs away from where I live] get national coverage, and yes — I knew her but I was not a friend of hers — but like I said, she has really close friends and a great family — pray for them and pray for their strength to slowly get past this terrible murder. Like I already said, this young lady was truly a nice girl. Everyone I know says that she was and based off of the few times that I talked to her on the school bus and in middle school / high school, she was extremely soft-spoken but superbly nice to me. Which is a rarity these days, many kids — in my opinion, young girls especially, are very egotistic and egocentric and snobby to people who are not in their clique of friends … but this young lady, Icie Hawkins, was truly of a rare breed. She is physically beautiful [extremely gorgeous] and on the inside, she was is purely a nice, sweet, caring, warmhearted, kind person. So soft spoken and very courteous to me, every time I ever talked to her — and she didn’t know me at all [I was an outcast in school and yet she is one of the few people that ever treated me respectfully and nicely]. I was acquaintances with her and we only spoke a few times throughout the years we attended the same school, but folks — I know it’s a cliche to say this about someome who passed away — but I really mean it … Icie was such a warmhearted and superbly nice person. Once again, please keep her closest friends and her family in your prayers. God Bless you Icie and Rest in Heavenly Peace, beautiful girl.