Cancer patient dies after severe beating in Zion

ZION, Ill. (WLS) -- A $25,000 reward is being offered for information in the murder of a 46-year-old cancer patient from Missouri who was being treated in north suburban Zion.

Shannon Vincel, of Springfield, Mo., was sitting outside the Guest Quarters, a hotel property for the Cancer Treatment Center of America, when she was attacked Monday night. Police said she was struck her in the head with a blunt object around 9:48 p.m. near 27th Street and Gabriel Avenue.

Vincel died Tuesday night at Condell Medical Center in Libertyville. Her family took her off life support after a severe head injury.

The Cancer Treatment Centers of America has pledged $25,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the individual responsible for Vincel's murder.

Vincel had been traveling to and from Zion every two weeks for radiation treatment for breast cancer, and had just returned on Monday after celebrating her mother's birthday.

"She was a very nice person, very, very outgoing, and very talkative. A sweet person, she was very sweet," said Charlie Moats, a Guest Quarters visitor.

Moats said he was outside with his brother and Vincel a half-hour before the incident.

"I'm just confused. It's terrible, just terrible. I'm ready to go home," he said.

A spokesperson for Cancer Treatment Centers of America issued a statement Thursday: "Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends of the victim involved in the tragic incident outside of Guest Quarters West, one of our hotel accommodations located at 1911 27th Street, Zion, Ill. We continue to support the ongoing investigation of the Zion Police Department in support of the Lake County Major Crimes Task Force. Our number one priority remains the safety and wellbeing of our patients, guests and employees."

Guests and those who live and work nearby were shaken by the brutal attack.

"It's really bad that this young lady came in for treatment for something that she and somebody had to do this to her. It's really sad," said Blondie Curtis, a resident.

"Whoever did this, I wish they'd come forward and turn themself in because that don't make no sense what they did to this woman. She came up here to get herself cleared of cancer and they took her life out," said Valerie White, another resident.

Zion police and the Lake County Major Crime Task Force are investigating. They would not comment on a motive, but said they are looking at area surveillance video and interviewing residents.

"I have an 80-year-old mother that could have been out here. I have friends from the CTAC that run. It could have been anybody," said Tammy Williams, who works nearby.

Anyone with information should call police at (847) 872-8000, or Lake County Crime Stoppers at (847) 662-2222.
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