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Family hopes reward will bring new leads in 10-year-old cold case

The Eichler family lost two loved ones to murder in less than a year

NEW HAVEN, Conn. — While others are celebrating the fourth of July, a Connecticut family is hoping for answers to help solve their loved one's murder 10 years after she was killed.

While her murder has never been solved, last week Gov. Ned Lamont issued a $25,0000 reward for information about Diana Eichler’s murder. Her family is also raising awareness for another loved one’s unsolved case. 

“Probably one of the biggest families around, most of the kids are adopted,” said Diana Eichler’s mom Marge Eichler. 

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Marge Eichler has 17 children in all, but the life of one of them, Diana Eichler, was taken too soon.

“They dragged her through the woods, threw her in a river, and she was found probably within a couple of hours because there was a trail of blood,” said Eichler.

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 It's a day Marge said she won’t forget. On June 16, 2012, Diana was discovered by hikers inside a drainage tunnel of Miner Falls on Miner Street in Middletown. 

“I said to the detective that was my daughter wasn’t it on the news? They said it was Diana and I almost collapsed,” said Eichler.

Her mom hopes this will bring more answers and possibly justice.

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“I did see her and that’s the reason I want an arrest. I want to be able to make a victim impact statement in the courtroom because I know what they did to her,” said Eichler. 

Not only for her but also for Diana’s 16-year-old daughter who was five when her mother was killed.

“If it were your kid, you would want someone to speak up for them,” said Eichler.

The pain of losing a child to violence continued for Marge just a few months after Diana's death. Her son, Richard, affectionately known as Ricky was shot and killed in New Haven in April 2013. 

“He died by drowning in his own blood,” said Eichler. “He was attacked and killed with guns. Five bullet wounds to the chest. He was able to stumble into the neighborhood store and the killers followed him in and continued shooting him." 

Days like the Fourth of July hit hard for the family. Marge remembers her son celebrating the fourth of July like years before.   

“Ricky was the grill master and Ricky did the backyard fireworks. We have tried to fill in that role but I’m telling you no one can cook or no one can set off the fireworks like Ricky,” said Eichler.

Ricky's presence was irreplaceable, especially for the daughter he left behind. 

“I wish there was a reward for my dad,” said Ricky’s daughter. 

Their family hopes that with a reward being issued for Diana, one will soon come for Ricky.

“Maybe we’re hoping Governor Lamont will order a reward for his murder suspects to be brought in because it’s hard to have two grandchildren who lost their parents within a couple of months and neither murder has been solved,” said Eichler. “Ricky and Diana were parents. They were loved people; they didn’t deserve that kind of death.”

The Middletown Police Department is asking for the public’s help in solving Diana’s crime and bringing the person responsible to justice. Anyone with information is encouraged to contact Detective C. Iovene at 860-638-4148.

DeAndria Turner is a multi-media journalist at FOX61 News. She can be reached at dturner@fox61.com. 

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