Hundreds of people gathered at the Gallo Center for the Arts on Saturday morning to pay tribute to the mother and her two daughters who were slain inside an east Modesto home two weeks ago.
Among those in attendance were family, colleagues, friends and patients of Dr. Amanda Crews, as well as ballet teachers, school employees and classmates of her 6-year-old daughter, Elizabeth. Baby Rachael had only 6 short months on Earth, but she, too, had touched people.
“She would bounce and bound and bounce on her chair, and she also had her own language; she would have full-on conversations with herself as she stared at herself in the mirror,” pastor Josh Fala said.
A tribute video was played during the hourlong service in which Crews’ loved ones spoke of her adventurous spirit and infectious smile, her unconditional devotion to her children, and her compassionate approach with her patients.
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“She hoped and worked for better health for her patients who she loved so much,” said colleague Glen Villanueva. “She hoped and loved to strengthen the community in which she lived.”
Friends of Crews said her daughter Elizabeth looked like a “child doll” from the day she was born, with her fair skin and the “softest hair.”
She was a little girl who loved to draw and was inseparable from her baby brother, Christopher, who died at the age of 2 in October.
The father of Rachael, Martin Martinez, has been charged with murder in the death of Christopher, who suffered a head injury while home alone with the suspect. Martinez also remains the sole suspect in the deaths of Crews, Rachael and Elizabeth, as well as his mother, Anna Brown Romero, 57, and a 5-year-old girl whose name was not released at the request of her family. All five were found dead inside a home on Nob Hill Court on July 18.
“Elizabeth not only joins her little brother in heaven but now she has the hard task of introducing her little brother to his baby sister, Rachael, who he never met,” said Fala, associate pastor at Christian Worship Center in Manteca.
Crews and her daughters were laid to rest Friday during a private service for the family.
A fundraiser has been established to help cover the expenses incurred by the family of the victims. To donate, visit http://bit.ly/1HfRXkA