Updated: 5:17 p.m. Sunday, June 16, 2013 | Posted: 9:45 a.m. Saturday, June 15, 2013

Stabbing victim’s family struggles with loss

    By Eric Schwartzberg

    Staff Writer


    Family members of a 56-year-old woman said they are trying to comprehend how a seemingly standard argument could have boiled over into an act of fatal violence.

    Diana Ross, who was born and raised in Hamilton, was reportedly stabbed just before 11:07 p.m. Friday outside a home in the 500 block of Monument Avenue, according to Hamilton police. She was then taken to The Fort Hamilton Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.

    Police and the Butler County Coroner’s Office are investigating. Police did not release any information about an arrest.

    The stabbing occurred when Ross, who moved to Cincinnati about a year ago, paid a visit to her older sister, Dorothy Allen.

    “A friend of mine down the street from me, they got into an argument and she got stabbed,” Allen said Sunday, her voice filled with emotion. “It just happened so fast.”

    Allen said she attempted to keep things calm in the yard moments before the situation went horribly awry.

    “I was trying to tell them to hold it down, that it was unnecessary … and before I knew anything, they were up and tussling, and then I saw (my neighbor) hit her right in here,” Allen said, pointing to the area between her chest and stomach. “I didn’t know that she had a knife. I just thought that she hit her with her fists.”

    Ross collapsed and Allen tried to stop the bleeding as the neighbor fled.

    Dedra Ray, one of Ross’ daughters, said Ross and the neighbor “had words before, here and there … little arguments” but nothing on the level of Friday’s incident.

    “We would have never thought something like this would have happened,” Ray said. “It could have been prevented. She could have walked away from the argument and went home.”

    Ross was the mother of three, grandmother of five and great-grandmother of four. She also was stepmother to seven, step grandmother to 32 and step great-grandmother to three, the family said.

    Allen described her sister as a good, fun-loving person.

    Victoria Ross, another of Ross’ daughters, said of her mother: “Nobody cared as much as she did about anything that she cared about.”

    “She loved her family more than anything and her family loved her,” she said. “We just can’t believe … it’s crazy.”

    Ray said her mother was “very driven, very precise, straight to the point” and lovable.

    Words cannot describe the type of person Ross was, her daughters said.

    “She was a great mom, a great wife, a great step mom, a great auntie, sister, grandma,” Victoria Ross said.

    Despite the uncertainty that continued to swirl around the fate of the suspect Sunday, family members said there was one fact that stood out following Ross’ death.

    “For everyone here, life has changed,” stepdaughter Banita Mathis said. “No one’s life is going to be the same.”

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