Family says goodbye to 5-year-old Giovanna Hernandez at Buda church

Those who knew and loved 5-year-old Giovanna Hernandez or "Gio" as she was often called filed behind her casket into Santa Cruz Catholic Church in Buda on Tuesday.

In the funeral program Gio was described as always singing and dancing.  She enjoyed watching silly YouTube videos and hosting tea parties with her grandparents. 

Neighbor Mary Jenkins says she had just seen Gio out playing the day before she died.

"I can't sleep ever since the day that that happened.  I just can't sleep, I can hear the child yelling and crying but I thought that she was playing...like a little child loves to play and jump and sing.  And right now I feel a void and I know that our neighborhood feels that void and it's going to stay with us," Jenkins said.

Last Thursday Hays County Sheriff's deputies arrested Krystle Concepcion Villanueva for allegedly stabbing her own daughter to death and partially mutilating her body.  They say Villanueva also stabbed her father-in-law who made the initial 911 call. 

Sheriff Gary Cutler spoke with Fox 7 after the crime.

"It's probably one of the most horrific cases in the history of Hays County, it's very sad," he said.

Jenkins is also a longtime member of Santa Cruz.  She says she's spent some time with Giovanna's family this week.

"The young man, the father...he's very broken.  He's very sad," she said.

A GoFundMe page has been set up for Giovanna's father and her grandfather to help them buy a new mobile home...somewhere far away from where this happened.  It's raised more than $4,000.

Jenkins is a mother herself.  I asked her how anyone could do this.

"Somebody that doesn't have heart.  Somebody that doesn't love.  Especially if they're going through turmoil or financial help and marriage problems...and they take it out on the children.  It's sad," she said.

Villanueva is charged with capital murder and aggravated assault.
               
The family handed out a brief statement to the press this morning. 
               
They thank the community for the love and support and they want to remind everyone to go hug and love on their children because you never know if it's the last time.

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