Family says Pierson Township couple murdered Thursday had reconciled after divorce filing
Published: Tuesday, November 02, 2010, 5:46 AM Updated: Tuesday, November 02, 2010, 7:03 AM
MONTCALM COUNTY — As the family of Michael and Kathleen Greene awaits the couple’s Friday burial, police are looking for a white or light-colored vehicle seen parked in their driveway the day they were killed.
Montcalm County sheriff’s detectives said the vehicle, possibly an SUV, was seen in the neighborhood and in the Greenes’ driveway sometime before an 11:20 p.m. fire broke out at the Greenes’ Shorecrest Drive home on Thursday.
Police did not say who spotted the vehicle or divulge the time of day it was seen.
In a statement released Monday, sheriff’s investigators confirmed the Greenes were homicide victims, but have so far refused to say how they died.
The Howard City Fire Department responded to their home on Whitefish Lake after a neighbor heard crackling and reported the fire. A firefighter found the couple’s bodies inside and, believing they did not die from smoke or fire, called police to investigate.
Michael Greene’s mother, Charlene Greene, described her son Monday as “a very good person.”
“He was a Christian man and Kathleen was a Christian woman,” she said.
She said her son, 59, enjoyed fishing. The couple’s joint obituary said he had served in the U.S. Air Force and was a jack-of-all-trades who enjoyed scuba diving. He recently retired as an executive director at IBM.
Kathleen Greene, 56, enjoyed crafts, shopping and antiques, according to the obituary.
They attended Grace Community Church in Howard City.
While Kathleen had filed for divorce in July, family members said the two had reconciled and were looking forward to a fresh start by making plans to sell the Whitefish Lake house.
Funeral services are 11 a.m. Friday at St. Louis Church of Christ in St. Louis. Visitation is 2-4 p.m. and 6-8 p.m. Thursday at Smith Family Funeral Home in Ithaca.
Family members have said they cannot discuss the cause of death for the Greenes. It wasn’t immediately clear whether police told them not to talk about those details.
Montcalm County Sheriff Bill Barnwell has said detectives want to hold back some important details about the homicide because, if a suspect is caught, it may be easier to link the crime to that person.
Meanwhile, Charlene Greene is trying to cope with her son’s death.
“This is terrible,” she said.
Anyone with information about the vehicle can call Montcalm County sheriff’s detectives at 989-831-7590 or Silent Observer at 1-866-774-2345.