Woman's life savings stolen by man, woman pretending to be friendly neighbors

By Keith Garvin - Anchor/Reporter

HOUSTON - Many would say "monsters" is the proper word for the couple who targeted 87-year-old Vivian Sundermeyer.

A man and woman used a ruse to break into Sundermeyer's home in northwest Houston and steal not only her jewelry, but her life savings in cash.

"It's been a hard time getting over it. Just thinking that people can be that ugly," Sundermeyer said. "They don't care what they leave, how bad it leaves you, and what position you're left in. Because I can't get out and work like I used to."

Sundermeyer said about a month ago, a woman came by her home with a man she claimed was her husband. They said they were new to the area and wanted to meet neighbors.

They came back a few days later, and the woman lured Sundermeyer out of her home by claiming she had car trouble.

"One time when she was here, the man said that he had to go back home and headed back the other direction," her daughter, Bett Sundermeyer, said. "What we think he did is jump the fence here and break into a side door that was out of view."

Sundermeyer and her daughter eventually discovered almost all her jewelry was stolen, and even worse, an entire safe that contained her life savings in cash. Now the woman who has helped so many people and rescue animals get back on their feet is hoping someone will do the same for her.

"She's helped a lot of people and a lot of animals over the years, and it's just very frustrating that someone would come and use that kindness against her," Bett Sundermeyer said.

Vivian Sundermeyer echoed that frustration.

"It's very discouraging," she said. "I just hope that something can be done."

The Houston Police Department is investigating the burglary and is asking for anyone with information about the crime to give them a call.

In the meantime, the family set up a GoFundMe account to help replenish Vivian Sundermeyer's life savings.

Sundermeyer and her daughter said the couple was in a dark-grey SUV, possibly a Lexus, with black wheels that had a red spot in the middle of the wheels.

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