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VENTURA COUNTY ROUNDUP | East County / SIMI VALLEY

Services Held for Slain 19-Year-Old

December 09, 1998|ANDY SAMUELSON

Dozens of friends and family members gathered Tuesday to remember Melinda Marie Brown, the 19-year-old from Simi Valley whose death is being investigated as a homicide.

More than 150 people attended funeral services for Brown at Reardon Simi Valley Mortuary. She was buried later in the day at Oakwood Memorial Park in Chatsworth.

Glen Jackson, pastor of Simi Valley Christian Church, presided over the service and urged Brown's loved ones to search for understanding.

"We anticipate burying our parents and our grandparents," he said, "but we don't anticipate burying our children."

Several of Brown's friends said they are still having a hard time accepting her death. "We're more confused than anything else," said Bennie Bridges, 22. "No one knows what to think."

After being missing for nearly two weeks, Brown's body was found Nov. 29 in Los Padres National Forest, just west of Hungry Valley, near the town of Gorman.

Coroner's investigators concluded last week that Brown died of a single gunshot wound to the torso. Authorities have not released further details.

Brown was reported missing Nov. 17, four days after she failed to return home from an evening at Brunswick Valley Bowl. She was last seen at 10 that night at Stearns Mobil Station on Cochran Street.

"She was like an angel with her long blond hair," said friend Chyanne Craft, 21. "That's how I will remember her."

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