Touched by one killing, taken by another

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Late last month, Amanda Lynn Faux told the Pittsburgh news media of her regret, sadness and mourning after bones found on a hillside in Clairton were identified as those of her missing cousin.

Nine days later, Ms. Faux's body was found in a trash bin in Charleroi. Like her cousin, Melissa Galiyas, her life was taken in a yet-unsolved homicide.

"It's sad she had to go that way. I wonder if she suffered, if she went fast," Ms. Faux was quoted in a Dec. 29 Pittsburgh Tribune-Review story.

She told WTAE-TV, "It's just nice to have closure, too. Not always wondering where is she at -- are they ever going to find her."

Ms. Faux, 22, of Munhall, died of asphyxiation; the cause of death for Ms. Galiyas, 33, of Clairton, has not been determined.

Ms. Faux's nude body was discovered at about 6:45 p.m. Sunday in a trash bin in an alley by a tenant in a nearby apartment building at 213 Fifth Ave. An electrical cord had been tied around her neck and a plastic bag was secured over her head.

Tenants in the apartment building said she and a man who identified himself as Joe had moved into a third-floor apartment the preceding day, attended a small Steelers party that night and later had a violent argument in their new place.

The man, whom Charleroi police said is a person of interest in the investigation but have not identified, told officers he only met Ms. Faux recently, didn't know her last name and that she left his place of her own accord for an unknown destination. Tenants said he told them she left to do heroin with friends.

Ms. Galiyas' remains were found about 2:30 p.m. Dec. 22 by a hunter near her home. She had been missing since April.

Charleroi police were not available for comment. Allegheny County homicide Lt. Christopher Kearns said investigators at this point know of no connection in the slayings.

There was a connection in their lives, however.

Jack A. Nolder Sr., 73, of Clairton, said yesterday that he lived platonically with both women at separate times. Each had sought refuge in his home after being physically abused by their boyfriends, he said.

Ms. Galiyas lived with him for seven years, during which Mr. Nolder said he spent upwards of $10,000 putting her into drug rehab programs. She left his home to live with another man last year.

He said he got to know Ms. Faux as the search for Ms. Galiyas began after she went missing in April. That same month, he said, Ms. Faux knocked on his door at 3 a.m. and asked to stay the night, saying her boyfriend had beaten her in their home about a block and a half away. Her face was bruised and her hand was cut, he said.

"One day turned into a few more days and then into nine months," he said. "She was a good girl. She stayed home. I don't know of her doing anything wrong."

Ms. Faux left Mr. Nolder's home at 9 p.m. Jan. 1, saying she was going to see a friend and would be back in an hour. She called the next day saying she met a man and was moving with him to Charleroi.

"I said 'You're going to move in with somebody you don't know?' She said, 'He's around my age and we seem to get along good.' "

Later he learned that she, like Ms. Galiyas, whom he called "Missy," had been killed.

"It went through my mind, what am I? I treated these kids good, I tried to help them both. When it happens a second time it's really rough, really rough."

Ms. Faux is survived by her parents, Terence and Leslie Faux of Munhall; a brother, J. Aron Faux, and a sister, Sara Faux, both of Munhall; and her grandparents Joseph Alvin and Lorrie Struiff of West Mifflin and Joanne Curcio of West Elizabeth.

Friends will be received tomorrow from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. at William S. Skovranko Memorial Home, Richford Street and Commonwealth Avenue, Duquesne, where a funeral service will be held Friday at 10 a.m. Interment will be in Jefferson Memorial Park, Pleasant Hills.


Michael A. Fuoco can be reached at mfuoco@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1968.


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