WATONGA — Early Sunday, Erma Daukei swore she heard the voice of her 8-year-old daughter, Rosalin.
After realizing the child wasn't there, Daukei said she broke down in tears with a gut-wrenching ache in her voice saying, “I just can't let her go; I can't let my baby go.”
Rosalin Renee Reynolds died Wednesday.
James “Icey” Daukei Jr., 20, of Watonga, is charged in Blaine County District Court with first-degree murder in the death of the second-grader.
He is accused of stabbing her multiple times with a knife.
Erma and James are cousins, the grieving mother said.
Rosalin is Erma Daukei's and Ralph Reynolds' middle child. The parents have been married for six years, but Daukei decided to keep her maiden name for personal reasons, she said.
“Ever since I was growing up, I liked the name Rosalina, and I wanted to name her after my sister, Renee,” Erma Daukei said.
With a heritage of African-American, Hispanic, Cheyenne and Kiowa, Daukei and Reynolds decided on a slight variation of the name Rosalina and named their firstborn daughter, Rosalin Renee.
Rosalin had just gotten a bike from her grandparents over spring break.
“She loved riding her bike and skating,” Daukei said.
Daukei described her daughter as a very outgoing and outspoken girl who loved everything associated with being a princess.
“She liked having her nails done, and she loved makeup,” Daukei said. “Her favorite colors are purple and pink.”
On Sunday, the family had the unbearable task of selecting a pink dress for Rosalin's funeral and burial. Her cousin and her 6-year-old sister plan to wear matching pink dresses and shoes to go with Rosalin's funeral attire, Daukei said. “They want to look just like her — they wanted to be triplets.”
The funeral is scheduled for 1 p.m. Thursday at Watonga High School.
Rosalin also has a 10-year-old brother, who is having a hard time with his sister's death, while the younger sister really doesn't understand what is going on, Daukei said.
Already grieving over the death of one child, the parents' other two children have been taken away by the state Department of Human Services.