LORAIN – When Linda Wisniewski did not show up Wednesday morning to babysit the bubbly almost 1-year-old little girl she affectionately called her granddaughter, Candie Casner said she knew something was terribly wrong.
“That was her pride and joy and she would never miss a day to watch her baby,” Casner said.
Casner said her father told her to go to work. He was sure his fiancée was fine, and he would watch Casner’s daughter, Kaylee, until Wisniewski arrived.
As hours passed without a phone call or text message and Wisniewski’s social media account showed more than 13 hours of inactivity, Casner said she left her job and went to Wisniewski’s Amherst Avenue home. She knocked on the doors and windows while thoughts of the worst-case scenarios played in her head.
“What if Wisniewski had a heart attack and needed help?” Casner, 30, said she thought.
“That’s when her neighbor came out and told me she was murdered,” Casner said. “I just immediately went down to my knees. I just couldn’t believe it. Linda never had one enemy and I have no idea who would brutally murder her.”
Lorain police are investigating Wisniewski’s death as a homicide.
According to a news release, Lorain officers responded to a “burglary in progress” call at at about 10 p.m. Tuesday 3625 Amherst Avenue.
There, officers found Wisniewski, 67, dead.
A 28-year-old man who Casner said Wisniewski loved like a nephew, who lived with Wisniewski, was also at the house and was severely injured. Kenneth “Chip” Williams, 28, was taken to MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland where he is listed in critical condition.
Lenore Wright and Sam Whitehead said Wisniewski was a good neighbor.
“She just seemed like a real friendly person,” Whitehead said.
The home had no signs of forced entry, and the neighbors also said they heard no gunshots last night.
There are no suspects and no arrests have been made in connection with incident at this time, Police Lt. Ed Super said.
“There is still a lot of information that is not available for release,” Super said.
Casner said the not knowing is extremely hard.
“She had no enemies whatsoever and she was the most caring person ever,” she said.
Casner said Wisniewski was born and raised in Lorain and although she lived for a while in West Virginia, she returned to Lorain a few years ago. That is when she met Casner’s father and the two began a relationship.
“She always wanted a family and as soon as she met my dad, she had the family she always wanted,” Casner said. “Now someone took all that away. I feel like I lost another mom. I lost my mom to cancer, but I met Linda and she immediately became my second mom.”
Casner has started a Gofundme account to help raise funds for Wisniewski’s funeral as the woman did not have insurance. The goal is to raise $10,000 to give the woman the memorial services she deserved, Casner said.
“This is so unfair and the world is so cruel,” Casner said. “I want to do this for her because Linda was the most caring person ever. She would have done anything for anyone.”
As police continue to investigate, they would like anyone who may have information about the incident to call Lorain police at (440) 204-2100.