June 12, 1990 Clay County, Texas millionaire Jerry Sternadel died a horrible and very painful death. His death certificate read: “Patient was given arsenic over a period of time until lethal amounts finally killed him.” Thus started the odyssey of Sternadel’s ex-wife Jeannie Walker to find his killers. “Fighting the Devil” is the culmination of her journey.
Walker worked closely with the Clay County Sheriff’s office collecting information and became a key player in the team that finally brought the woman accountable for Sternadel’s death to justice.
Walker writes that she made numerous phone calls, talked on the phone, and had been sworn in as a deputy. Over the next 20 years family, friends, and people investigating the case encouraged her to keep probing Sternadel’s murder and to write about her journey. According to Walker, in 1994 she almost lost sight of the goal after the suspect in the murder was convicted of first-degree murder but only received probation. Walker agonized over the ending of the book with the convicted murder on probation. “How could I end it? The bookkeeper who was convicted of arsenic murder had been sentenced to probation. That’s not a very good ending.”
However, in 2003, convicted killer, Debra Baker violated the terms of her probation and was returned to prison.
Jeannie Walker is a freelance writer and award-winning songwriter. She studied creative writing in New York and Connecticut. She is a member of the International Association of Writers. She is an avid reader of mystery novels and the ex-wife of a murdered man. She resides in Texas.
For information about the book review, contact the library at 477-2890. Walker will have copies of her book available for purchase and autographs.