Silvestre Diaz's stepdaughter speaks about man decapitated on Christmas Day

December 30, 2013 (CHICAGO)

Little more than a year after burying their mother, the children of Silvestre Diaz now find themselves having to bury their father as well, while trying to come to terms with the horrific way in which he died.

"I walk past his room hoping to see him in there," said Edwards.

It wasn't until Christmas morning, when they read the newspaper reports that a 41-year-old Hispanic male had been found decapitated, that Silvestre Diaz's children realized something was wrong.

"My brother saw the picture of the building. Recognized it from being there before and he called us crying," said Edwards.

Speaking out for the first time, Angela Edwards says neither she, nor any of her five siblings had ever met their father's girlfriend, nor her teenage nephew, who is now charged with Diaz's grizzly murder. What they do know, is that they've now lost their only remaining parent. Their mother died of lupus, a year ago.

"He was awesome. He was always there when we were little. He was there to play with us. He was there to help us with anything we needed. Even when we were older he came to stay here with me and if I needed anything he'd ask, 'what do you need?'" said Edwards.

It was in the early hours of Christmas Day when police say they first got the 911 call from 18-year-old Alexis Valdez. When they arrived at the basement apartment Valdez shared with his aunt on the 2500-block of North Kildare, they found Diaz's decapitated body. In bond court last week, prosecutors said Valdez confessed to the murder, saying he was angry at his aunt who had recently told him he could no longer live with her. The aunt was not home at the time of the incident.

"What he did was horrible. Being put in jail for life is something he deserves. What he did and the way he did it. The details he shared, laughing on the phone. That's a monster," said Edwards.

Diaz's body is still at the medical examiner's office. His children are trying to raise enough money to hold a funeral and send his remains back to his native Mexico.

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