Memorial service for UNCW murder victim - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

6.11.04

Memorial service for UNCW murder victim

Hand-in-hand the parents and younger brother of murder victim Christen Naujoks entered her memorial service to remember a life cut sadly short.

"They'll never lose the precious 22 years they had with her," said Father Matthew Hendrick, who delivered the eulogy.

For Hendrick, it was a tough assignment. It came just six days after Naujoks was shot 11 times outside her Northchase apartment, and just three nights after her accused killer and ex-boyfriend, John Peck, turned the gun on himself while running from authorities.

The service inside St. Mark Catholic Church is private but, we were able to see the altar decorated with flowers, surrounding a photo of the 22-year-old victim, cuddling with a kitten.

Friends say she adored animals and life.

"I could always call her, and she was such a soothing person," said friend Tina Nelson.

An hour after the service begins, the sad faces emerged: law enforcement officers who hunted her killer, prosecutors who planned to lock him up and friends and family still somewhat in shock.

"It's tough to know she'll no longer be around," Nelson said. "I think it's starting to sink in for me."

Finally, her parents walked out as quietly as they came in, taken away by a sheriff's escort. The shriek of the sirens from the procession were the only sound in the still air.

"She's with God now and with Christ," Fr. Hendrick said.

Naujoks' body is being returned to her home state of Ohio for her funeral, giving her friends and family there one final chance to bid her farewell.

Reported by Aaron Saykin

Powered by WorldNow