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Dec 29, 2011 8:32 AM by Kate Richards

Family of torched woman speaking out

NEW YORK (AP) - The family of the Brooklyn woman torched in her building's elevator is speaking up a day before her funeral.

Her adult children are holding a news conference Thursday to discuss the sudden, horrific death of Deloris Gillespie.

The 73-year-old died on Dec. 17 after being sprayed with gasoline and set her ablaze near her apartment in Brooklyn's Prospect Heights neighborhood.

The suspect is a handyman she knew. He told police she owed him money; she had told neighbors he was stealing from her.

The funeral for the woman who helped many in her community is scheduled for noon Friday at the First A.M.E. Zion Church in the Bedford Stuyvesant neighborhood.

A Manhattan hedge-fund manager who did not know Gillespie is paying for her last rites and burial.

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