Memorial service in Arkansas honors slain Lake Central graduate

2012-01-16T12:08:00Z 2013-11-28T17:38:07Z Memorial service in Arkansas honors slain Lake Central graduateThe Associated Press The Associated Press
January 16, 2012 12:08 pm  • 

HOT SPRINGS VILLAGE, Ark. | A slain Arkansas police dispatcher was remembered Saturday as a devoted mother and loyal daughter who donated a kidney to her father.

Family members, friends and co-workers reflected on Lake Central graduate Dawna Natzke's life during a memorial service at the Village Church of Christ in Hot Springs Village, the Sentinel-Record reported.

Service co-officiant David Tappe said Natzke, 46, was "fun-loving and outgoing and she never met a stranger." He said she was a devoted mother of her three sons and a loyal daughter who at age 35 donated a kidney to her father, Homer Smith.

"Homer lived 10 more years because of Dawna," Tappe said. "She was his lifeline when she donated a kidney to him."

He said she passed those unselfish ways on to her sons.

Two of Natzke's sons, both football players on the high school football team at Jessieville, entered the church with several teammates who were all wearing their jerseys. Natzke's mother, Doris Smith, fought back tears when seeing the teens.

"They're wearing their jerseys for my grandsons," she told the newspaper. "Bless them all."

People started arriving at the church an hour before the service and viewed a slideshow. Members of the Hot Springs Village Police Department, where Natzke had worked for seven years, stood at attention on either side of a table at the front of the sanctuary that was bearing a photograph of their slain colleague. Fire department members joined them.

The honor guard rotated every few minutes.

"The community support has been fantastic. It has been overwhelming," Smith told the newspaper before the service. "I really have a lot of thanks to give to this community. I am going to have to do a lot of things to catch up with them once I've had a little time."

She said no further information has been released to the family about her daughter's death.

"We're not asking questions right now," Smith said.

Natzke's body was found New Year's Eve in a remote part of the woods about five miles from where her burned-out station wagon turned up in the Ouachita National Forest. Authorities say they have a person of interest in the death, but they won't say who it is. No one has been arrested.

Natzke was last seen on Dec. 21 when she was leaving a holiday party with her boyfriend in Hot Springs Village, which is a gated community. The boyfriend, Kevin Duck, 28, told detectives the couple returned to Natzke's home that night and that she wasn't there when he awoke the next morning.

Natzke wasn't reported missing until Dec. 23, when she didn't show up for work.

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Information from: The Sentinel-Record, http://www.hotsr.com

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.



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10 E. Joliet Street Schererville, IN 46375
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