Family of Attack Victim in Yakima Speaks Out - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Family of Attack Victim in Yakima Speaks Out

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YAKIMA, Wash.--It was a vicious attack that family members said took away a huge chunk of who Vern Holbrook is.
 
"He isn't the same person at all," said Andrew Rockenfield, Vern's Stepson. "He can't really respond to people. We're not quite sure if he knows who people are."
 
Family members said the thing that scares them the most is that they don't know if he'll ever make a full recovery. The 78-year-old suffered multiple skull fractures and cuts.
 
According to court documents, Luis Gomez-Monges and Adriana Mendez used fake identities and a false back story to get the 78-year-old realtor to meet them for a house showing back in May. That's when he was brutally beaten and his throat slashed.
 
"When he does have what I would describe as a nightmare then he will talk sometimes, often times about how hard this situation was for him and how scared he is and why are you doing this to me," said Rockenfield. "What did I do to you?"
 
And why was the big question. Until now Yakima County Sheriff's Deputies weren't releasing a motive. But recent court documents implicate Daniel Blizzard as a big piece to the puzzle.
 
Blizzard and his brothers were going to buy Aspen Real Estate from Vern and carried a million dollar life insurance policy on him. When the brothers failed to make some payments, the deal was revoked.
 
Deputies said Blizzard and his girlfriend at the time Jill Taylor, who happens to be Vern's former daughter-in-law, made arrangements to have the older man killed. Taylor had her own grudge after Vern stopped paying her rent and car payments. Taylor has not been arrested.
 
Deputies said this investigation is ongoing, and Vern's family said they just want their leader back.
 
Blizzard is facing charges of attempted murder. His bail is set at $1 million.
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