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Body Of Staten Island Mom Killed In Turkey On Its Way Back To U.S.

Sarai Sierra (credit: Handout)

Sarai Sierra (credit: Handout)

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – The body of the Staten Island mother murdered in Turkey is being returned home.

Sarai Sierra‘s remains were expected to arrive later Thursday. Sierra’s family finalized funeral arrangements as her body was being flown back from Turkey.

She will be buried at a cemetery located a couple of blocks away from the apartment where she lived with her husband and two children.

Two viewing periods have been scheduled on Feb. 14 at Christian Pentecostal Church at 900 Richmond Road, the same church where she met and married her husband, Steven.

The viewings will be held from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Her funeral will be held the following day at the church before the funeral at Silver Mount Cemetery.

Sierra traveled to Istanbul alone on Jan. 7 to explore her photography hobby. She also made a side trip to Amsterdam, Netherlands, and Munich, Germany. It was her first trip outside of the United States.

The 33-year-old mother of two was found dead 12 days after she went missing.

Police said she had suffered a fatal blow to the head. She also had been stabbed.

Her murder remains unsolved.

More than a dozen people have been questioned in the case. The FBI is assisting in the investigation.

Steven Sierra and his wife’s brother, David Jimenez, returned to New York from Istanbul on Wednesday after flying there to help in the search and investigation. Jimenez said Steven informed the two boys, ages 9 and 11, of their mother’s fate when he returned.

Sarai Sierra’s parents said earlier in the week the family was waiting for Steven to return before telling the boys what happened to their mother. They had been told their father went to get her after she missed her plane home on Jan. 21.

“With children, it’s very difficult,” said John Rocco Carlo, the pastor of Christian Pentecostal Church, who said he advised the family on how to talk with the youngsters. “Fortunately, they have a wonderful family to lean on.”

Sierra’s family said she was on her first trip abroad pursuing a newfound hobby of photography. Jimenez said he has put the photos she posted on the photo-sharing site Instagram up for sale to raise money for her sons’ education and other future needs.

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