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WINNEBAGO COUNTY (IL) UNSOLVED MURDERS
January 12, 2002
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“He was my everything.”
Eight years and a month ago, Kathy Collins lost her best friend when Joshua Range lost his life, the victim of a brutal murder.
“He was my son; he was my best friend. He’s a good kid. I don’t know how anyone could have done something this horrific,” says Range’s mom, Julie Range.
On the morning of January 12, 2002, the 19-year-old Rochelle resident was
found stabbed to death in a drainage ditch at Rockford’s Summerdale Park near 2815 Overdene Ave.
“We feel very strongly the person who killed Josh, Josh knew,” says Rockford Police Deputy Chief Greg Lindmark.
Range’s car was found four hours later about three miles from the murder scene.
“We were able to determine he was killed in the park. His car was taken, from what we believe, from the suspect and taken to the 1100 block of Winnebago,” says Lindmark.
Back in Rochelle, the news of Range’s death came as a total shock. “I thought you were all joking. I was making deviled eggs. I never made them since. I can’t even boil an egg,” says Range’s best friend Kathy Collins. Josh’s friends remember the recent Rochelle High School graduate as someone who loved his cars.
“Had to be a Baretta with tinted windows.”
“Very wide variety, just very musical in general.”
And loved to work his magic in the kitchen.
“Making the best Banana Splits.”
“This is his 8th grade graduation.”
While Julie Range vividly remembers a phone call she made to her youngest of two sons the afternoon before Josh’s murder.
“I told him I loved him, and he of course said ‘Oh Mom, quit you know. I love you too,’ and that’s the last I talked to him,” says Range.
According to police the investigation suggests that Range’s death may have been a date gone bad.
“And he had come to Rockford for what he told friends was a date. We were never able to determine who this date was with. It was a male friend of his.
And they liked to meet in various parks in Rockford. In this particular case he was supposed to meet with an individual later in the evening,” says Lindmark.
Obviously there’s someone out there with information. What would you say to that person who’s watching? “Help me heal, let me get closure. I’m tired of crying,” says Collins.
“They say it gets better; it doesn’t. It eats away at you. When he died, your life does change,” says Range.
Anyone with information is urged to call the Winnebago County Sheriff’s Police Detective Bureau at (815) 319-6400 or Crime Stoppers (815) 963-7867.
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Illinois Cold Cases