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The beauty Judy Anne Bremer lived in Maundbury in a modest, East Side home. She ran a small shop called BREMER’S downtown. The shop sold clothing and cosmetics and Bremer had done very well for herself in a very short amount of time. She was admired by men and women alike and was said to have charm and charisma that were extremely hard to resist.
She was married to Mathew Thomas Bremer in the summer of 1940 and continued to run the shop despite family pleading for her to stop to begin a family.
Sadly, Mathew Thomas Bremer went away to fight in the war and never retuned. He had been caught in a blast from a grenade. His body was taken back to Maundbury and Judy Bremer demanded to see it despite its horrid condition. She was stoic as the coffin was opened and held her head high. “That’s him,” was all that she said.
Shattered by the loss, Bremer called for her sister to come and stay with her a while to help her the shop and with her darker days. Thelia Bremer came at once and was happy to flee the dull life she carved out for herself in Montana. She settled into Maundbury and the two were rarely seen apart.
It was said that Thelia Bremer had feelings for Dr. Jeremiah Lewis, but that Lewis was too wrapped up in his work for romance.
The two sisters carried on and Bremer’s continued to grow. In 1943, Thelia moved herself to Maundbury permanently and became part owner of Bremer’s. The shop was moved to a larger location in the winter of the same year. It became known for servicing both the well to do and the everyday townsfolk of Maundbury and showed respect to all who entered their shop.
The first wrinkle in the seemingly perfect recovery of Judy Anne Bremer came when Margaret Lancer entered Bremer’s and confronted her directly about sleeping with her husband – Roger Lancer. Lancer – her face a horrific mass of running makeup and tears – was “like a wild woman” and could not be calmed. She was arrested after she tried to assault the Bremer sisters and set fire to their shop. She was released when the sisters refused to press charges.
Rumors about the attack spread like wildfire and split people down the middle – one group though the sister would never do such a thing while another clung to the tale and used it to fuel the fires of jealousy that slithered through Maundbury like a cancer.
Roger Lancer killed Margaret two days later. He was found over the woman’s body still holding the belt he had strangled her with. When police arrived, the man was said to have looked confused and was in a daze and muttering, “What happened? What happened?” He was tried and moved to St. Mary’s Home shortly after. He did not remember the events of the evening before the police arrived.
Gossip spread, but no direct connection to the Bremer sisters was ever found.
Two months later, tragedy struck when Judy Bremer was attacked while closing the shop. The attacker was Ralph Soomes – a vagrant wanderer passing through Maundbury. He pushed his way into the shop and tried to have his way with Bremer. A passer by called for police and Soomes ran off. Bremer was bruised and frightened, but otherwise unharmed. Printed posters of Soomes’ likeness were posted and Thelia put up a $1000 reward for his capture.
Soomes’ body was found in a creek three miles from town shortly after. The body was beaten badly and cut about the face, neck and chest with something razor sharp. There was a dramatic loss of blood, but not much was found at the scene due to the body’s placement in the water.
When asked about the event, Judy Bremer’s only comment was a verse from the Bible.
“The LORD is good. When trouble comes, he is a strong refuge. And he knows everyone who trusts in him. But he sweeps away his enemies in an overwhelming flood. He pursues his foes into the darkness of night.”
Various stories can be found about the Bremer sisters – most having to do with Judy Bremer and her strange mix of stunning beauty and coldness she lived in. While Thelia was said to be vivacious and full of life, Judy was said to be dark and brooding – most likely due to the loss of her husband at such a young age.
Thelia married Marcus Thompson in 1946 and moved out of the Bremer home. She had three girls – Trudy, Marcy and Tanya.
Judy Bremer continued to live alone, but was a strong part of her sister’s family. Rumors continued to spread about her until her death from pneumonia in 1957. Thelia sold Bremer’s to the Macy’s Department Store chain soon after. The location was closed two years later.
Many Urban Legends sprang up about Judy Anne Bremer soon after her death. The various deaths that had taken place around her were developed into a tales of vampirism, lust and sadness.
• It was said that Bremer was seen in the woods during her own funeral – staring as her casket was lowered into the ground.
• On warm summer nights, it’s said that a woman can sometimes be seen weeping at the grave of Mathew Thomas Bremer.
• Several people claim to have seen Bremer in the woods – covered in blood and feeding on large animals like deer. Her eyes were said to have been blood red and burning.
• Travelers claim to see a woman on the side of the road with a bloody mouth and black eyes.
• Bremer is said to seduce lonely men. She draws them into the woods and has her way with them, then drinks from their veins.
• Woman in Maundbury jokingly call out, “You better take care of your man or Judy Bremer will be after him!”