"It's amazing the deals you start making with God at that point. Because in my mind, Bill wasn't bleeding so I thought he was going to be okay," Lisa Fickel said.
5 years passed before Lisa Fickel got news that a former neighbor may have been involved in her husband's death. That neighbor is Steven Rebert. He is the same man who was arrested last week for the deaths of Brockway-area couple James and Victoria Shugar.
"I recognized the name as someone whose property backs our property line. I was in disbelief."
Police connected the dots with information taken from a forensics search of Rebert's computer. After the Shugars' murders, police said Rebert searched for news articles on the case and also searched for two unsolved new york murders. Fickel's was one of them.
"It seemed kind of strange. Here he is, involved in a PA homicide and then he googles two homicides in western New York,"
Genessee County Sheriff Gary Maha said.
Sheriff Maha said there is not enough evidence to arrest Rebert for Fickel's murder at this point. However, there was reportedly a discarded cigarette butt left at Fickel's murder scene. Police were able to take DNA from it. According to Pennsylvania State Police, Rebert did something very strange while being questioned about the Shugars' murders.
In the report, the trooper wrote; "Lieutenant Bernard Petrovsky observed Rebert smoke two camel filter wides cigarettes, then put the filters into his pocket rather than throwing it away."
Lisa Fickel and Bill Fickel's father are not getting their hopes up.
"You've gone down the path and fallen off so many bridges and nothing has happened," John Fickel said.
Lisa said until they have the facts, they will not be celebrating. A DNA comparison is expected to take several months.