Fairfield homicide victim, 23, remembered by family, friends

Katherine Lobono had fun in everything she did in life and “loved unicorns and Jesus,” according to friends and family.

Emily Merkle worked with the 23-year-old known to friends as Kady, “like Cadillac,” for the past few years at Sports Clips in Harrison.

“She was super bubbly,” she said. “She had a very unique personality and relationship with the clients here.”

Lobono was discovered dead lying on the floor of her apartment at the Villages of Wildwood off Ross Road in Fairfield by friends who were dog-sitting while she was out of town, according to a 911 call. The Butler County Coroner has ruled her death a homicide, and police said they have interviewed close to two dozen people about her death.

Blood and a shell casing were found at the scene. The coroner’s office listed Lobono’s cause of death as “pending.”

Fairfield Officer Doug Day said Friday there have been no arrests, but there is no danger to the community.

“I do not believe there is an active threat to their safety,” he said.

Merkle said Lobono would call people “homie” or “bro,” and when she called a child back to cut their hair, she’d say, “Come on back, brotatochip.”

“She was in here just having a great time every single day,” Merkle said. “She lit up the salon every single day, and I think she was like that in everybody’s life.”

Lobono grew up in Cincinnati’s west side, first attending the all-girls Catholic high school Setonn and graduating in 2014 from Purcell Marian, a co-ed Catholic high school just west of Clifton.

Her family, who declined to be interviewed, wrote in Lobono’s obituary, “She had a zest for life.”

“She could make you laugh no matter what kind of day you were having,” according to the obituary. “She knew no strangers. She was the best ‘Barberista’ and could cut a mean fade.”

Her parents, John and Grace Lobono, called their daughter “Bub.”

“She always said she ‘felt like she was a peacock in a field of geese, with all ‘dem feathers fluffed out and stuff,’” according to the obituary.

Merkle plans to adopt one of Katherine’s dogs, Ceasar, a German Shepherd-mix.

“She just treated that dog like her own child,” Merkle said. “She spent all kinds of money on him, she has tons of posts of him on Instagram on her ‘furbaby.’”

Merkle said Lobono in July adopted a pitbull puppy, Roman.

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Lobono is survived by her parents, and sister, Angie, among many other family members. She is proceeded in death by her sister, Hope Lobono.

A visitation is set for 2 p.m. on Sunday with a memorial service following at 3:30 p.m., both at the Crossroads Westside, 8575 Bridgetown Road in Cleves.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations can be made in Lobono's name to the Peppermint Pig Animal Rescue, which can be found online at www.peppermintpiganimalrescue.org.