Bessy Blanco’s “approach on life was always a very positive and peaceful one,” her daughter said Thursday. “She handled everything with love and care.”
It was a horrific contrast to the violent way the woman died Feb. 18, 2017, at the hands of her former boyfriend.
Jose Lopez, 53, attacked Blanco with a machete inside her North Harrisburg home, severing her arm. He also stabbed the man with her, Mark Richart. Blanco then fled in Richart’s car.
The Ventnor man must now serve 30 years in prison without parole for the killing under a plea agreement. He also was given 20 years for the attack on Richart, which will be served concurrently.
Lopez would have to turn 81 before he could be released.
But Ana Blanco said Thursday was the last time she and her family would waste thinking of Lopez.
“This poor excuse of a human being is a true representation of a wolf in sheep’s clothing, an enemy disguised as a friend,” she said. “He is pure evil and a perfect example of all the ugliness in the world.”
Blanco said she will continue to miss her mother’s advice, hugs and daily phone calls. She still has nightmares, waking up to the reality of her mother being gone.
But there are also the times of peaceful dreams that remind her of the mother-daughter bond that will never truly be broken.
Lopez chose not to speak at his sentencing.
He is remorseful and apologetic, attorney Steve Scheffler said.
“He just wants both families to understand he wishes he could dial back the clock,” his attorney said.
Although Bessy Blanco would have found forgiveness in her heart, her daughter said that would not be the case for her.
“I will never, never forgive this monster,” Ana Blanco said. “And I will always hate him as long as I live.”