Support grows for family of Facebook murder victim

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CLEVELAND – While the family of Robert Godwin, Sr. prepares to say goodbye to the 74-year-old, whose murder was posted on the Facebook page of his killer, they said they are extremely grateful for the support they have received from people all over the country.

“So many people have reached out to us and it means so much,” said Tonya R. Godwin-Baines, Godwin's daughter.

Police said Godwin, Sr. was killed Sunday by Steve Stephens, who then posted the video of the murder on Facebook.

Sgt. Demetrick Pennie, President of Dallas Fallen Officer Foundation, said he wants to be the first person to donate to the family.

“Our police family loves this family and we want to help,” Pennie said.

Bubba’s Better Muffler in Bedford also offered to pay for Godwin’s funeral.

The family of Robert Godwin, Sr. provided this photo to FOX 8 News

“We talked about this and we thought we should take care of it,” said manager James Moore. He said the owner believes it is necessary to help out those in the community.

And many have said they are amazed at the strength, courage, and kindness of the Godwin family.

Even though the family is grieving, several family members have said they forgive Stephens. Two of Godwin’s daughters even reached out to Stephens’ former girlfriend, Joy Lane, to tell her that they don’t blame her for the murder. After Godwin’s murder, Stephens went on Facebook Live ranting about Lane.

“This is not your fault,” Tanya R. Godwin-Baines told Lane Tuesday during an interview with Fox 8.

Steve Loomis, president of the police union, said officers are praying for the family.

“We would also like to thank the Godwin family for providing an example of grace, elegance, faith, and love to the world in the midst of their personal and unimaginable tragedy the likes of which is rarely seen and desperately needed in today’s world,” Loomis said. “There is no doubt their father is very proud of them.”

Continuing coverage of this story.