Family and friends are still holding out hope for justice in the unsolved case of Somerville teenager Deanna J. Cremin, who was found murdered days after her 17th birthday in 1995.
“I am so frustrated, because it’s been 20 years,” her mother, Katherine Cremin, said in a phone interview Sunday. Though she said the unsolved murder has cast a shadow over the family’s life, “I won’t say I’ve lost hope,” Cremin said.
According to her mother, Deanna spent her last day with her boyfriend. When Cremin woke late March 29 and her daughter was not home, she called Deanna’s beeper and received no response.
Cremin called the boyfriend the next morning, asking him to send Deanna on her way home. He said he had walked her halfway home the previous night, Cremin recounted.
Monday marks the annual prayer service held for Deanna. March 30 is the date that two school girls found the teenager’s body on Jaques Street early in the morning. An autopsy revealed that she had been strangled and sexually assaulted.
“It is anguishing to think about how Deanna Cremin’s life was taken from her at the age of 17,” Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan said in a statement Sunday. “She was a high school student who had just celebrated her birthday and who had her whole life ahead of her.”
But the prayer service, which will take place at 7 p.m. at St. Ann Parish, will not focus on the crushing years after Deanna’s death. Rather, her mother said, it will celebrate the teenage girl’s impact during her 17 years and “how she touched other people’s lives.”
The investigation has remained active over the two decades, Ryan said. Although past leads “did not prove fruitful and this case is still unsolved, we continue to receive information and leads and will continue to follow up on any and all information,” she said.
Ryan asked anyone with information, even the smallest detail, about what happened that night in 1995 to contact her office.
The group Friends of Deanna Cremin sent out a flier in advance of the service, offering a $7,000 reward for new information leading to the capture or arrest of the perpetrator.
Cremin said she will always cherish memories of her daughter as compassionate, unselfish, and committed to becoming a teacher.
“She was just a good person and would have become a better person,” Cremin said. “Because of the person Deanna was, no one’s going to give up on getting justice for her,” she added.