Stephen West murders: Friend remembers teammate killed in 1986

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – The teenage girl who was murdered along with her mother in 1986 is well-remembered by a high school teammate – who is speaking publicly for the first time since that horrible day 33 years ago.

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Now that the convicted murderer of Wanda Romines and her daughter Sheila Romines is set to be executed via electric chair Thursday night, Sheila’s friend, Jenny Martin, is remembering her as she was.

Anderson County High School, home of the Mavs, is known for its competitive football team and its academics. Helping with that success is school counselor, Jenny Martin, who was part of the school’s basketball team back in 1986, and had befriended then-freshman player Sheila Romines.

“Sheila just met people really easily, she got along with all of us, wasn’t intimidated by older players or anything,” says Martin.

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Back then, Romines was already making a name for herself as a good player, a good student and had everything going for her.

“She was very smart, too – I remember that about her – didn’t struggle in class or anything. She would’ve been successful and had a family of her own, I’m sure,” Martin said.

Until now, Marin has never spoken publicly about the murders of Sheila and her mother, Wanda.

“It was really hard on all of us – it happened right after our season ended -her freshman year,” recalls Martin.

She also recalls the Romineses as a loving family, with parents who did everything right.

“I just remember them being so supportive and being in school and working in school for 26 years, that’s the kind of parents you want – the parents that don’t go away when a kid goes to high school – that they’re still really involved,” Martin said.

The entire community remembers them, too.

On Sheila’s headstone at Ridenour Cemetery, if you look closely, you can still see the inscription that reads, “Presented by Anderson County High School Freshman Class.”

(Photo: WATE)

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