The sanctity of her home violated, Ethlin Thompson left her home surrounded by family and NYPD detectives still reeling from the home invasion that claimed her husband's life.
Her grand-niece says she’ll be staying with loved ones for now.
"She's doing the best that she can to deal with the situation that's so unexpected," said Jerlene Thorne, the victim's grand-niece. "She's still in shock."
The 100-year-old was at home with her 91-year-old husband Waldiman Wednesday afternoon when at least two people broke into their Decatur Street brownstone, tied them up and ransacked the place.
"She said she was sitting on her bed with her husband. Her back was turned while she put her shoes on, and the person approached her from behind, by her throat, covered her mouth," said Margaret Babb, the victim's friend.
The harrowing details were recounted to Thompson's fellow congregants at Hanson Place Seventh Day Adventist Church. Thompson was able to escape and call police, but her husband went into cardiac arrest and died.
"She said, 'The Lord gave me a husband and he took away my husband, and that's OK,'" Babb said. "'We had a good life together.'"
The medical examiner says Waldiman Thompson suffered a sudden cardiac death due to restraint in a person with hypertensive and cardiovascular disease. His death was ruled a homicide as relatives arrange his funeral and try to comfort his grieving wife.
"A loved one has passed on, and so we've got a lot planning to do, lots of things to think about, and so we just ask everyone to keep us in their prayers," Thorne said.
Police combed through the home and surrounding block for clues. Sources say investigators have found surveillance video. And while nothing can bring her beloved husband back, Thompson's relatives hope the suspects will be held accountable.
"We just want those persons to turn themselves in, for them to be caught and justice to be served," Thorne said.