'A light for those who didn't have a light': Arab community mourns death of domestic violence victim

Family and friends are mourning the death of a woman after she was shot and killed in Guntersville Saturday morning. Sunday night a vigil was held in her honor.

Posted: Sep 29, 2019 7:33 PM
Updated: Sep 30, 2019 10:23 AM

Family and friends are mourning the death of a woman after she was shot and killed this weekend.

37-year-old Brandy Hammons died in what police called a domestic violence crime. Her death is the first recorded homicide in Guntersville this year.

Brandy's death is impacting people in Arab, where she worked as an apartment manager.

A memorial was set up at the front office where she worked. It was put up within hours of people hearing of her death.

For one man, the front porch light will always serve as a reminder of what an amazing Brandy was.

"I'd sit here sometimes 10, 15,20, 30 minutes just talking to her," Lee Masters said.

But, every time he would leave the front office.

"I would open the door and walk back in and say, 'By the way, your front porch light is on.' She would get the biggest kick out of that. If i didn't do that, she would follow me out and go, 'Hey! My porch light is on.'" Lee said smiling at the memory.

But, what Brandy Hammons might not have realized then was how much of a light she was in that apartment complex.

"She was a friend," many residents said.

"A confidant," another resident added.

She was more than just your average landlord. She was family to many people who live at Amberwood Apartments in Arab. They called her Miss Brandy, and say she was someone who went above and beyond for all of them.

"She was one of the people Alex looked up to," Sandra Vaughn said.

Alex, who is autistic, is Sandra Vaugh's son.

"He doesn't really get along with people or show emotion," Vaughn said.

But with Miss Brandi, he did.

"He would get off the bus in the afternoon and run straight to the office and tell her all about his day at school, even though he wouldn't tell me. He would tell her," Vaughn said.

Miss Brandy's impact didn't stop there.

"She made it a point to get to know everyone in this apartment complex and know their situation; and, just be there and be a comfort ,and be a light when a lot of us didn't have a light when we moved in," Vaughn said.

At this time, no funeral arrangements have been made, but a candlelight vigil was held in her honor at the apartment complex where she touched so many lives. 

"I do want to let you guys know she loved y'all so much," said Darlene Garrett as she spoke at the vigil. 

Before Saturday, the church alongside Hammons had coordinated a time for their first of many church services to be held at Amberwood Apartments. After Hammons' tragic death, church members and apartment residents decide to dedicate the service to remembering Hammons. Dozens gathered to sing together and share memories. 

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