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PLANO - Plano police are still searching for a killer. Investigators met on Thursday to decide their next step in the murder of Susan Loper.

While police have not said if they are any closer to finding the killer, one of Loper's closest friends talked with News 8 to paint a picture of the 40-year-old Pilates instructor and how her family is coping with her murder.

The agonizing wait ended for Loper's family and friends when Plano police called to let them know her body was found Wednesday.

Loper's longtime friend Julie Mitchell was there when they got the news.

At that moment, when it was definite that she wasn't coming home, to say it was emotional is such an understatement, Mitchell said. There's really no possible words to describe it.

Loper's 8-year-old son Jake came home Thursday for the first time since his mother's disappearance. He had been staying with his father, Loper's ex-husband.

He s asking all the normal questions an 8-year-old little boy would ask, 'Where's my mommy? Why? Are you sure I'm not going to see her again?' Mitchell said. How are you going to answer that?

Mitchell and Loper grew up together in Wichita Falls. She describes her best friend as real and loyal to a fault.

Loper s passions included holistic medicine, health and fitness.

She was our cheerleader, Mitchell said. She was our happy-happy, joy-joy. She had a cure for everything.

Loper s long time friend says her family doesn't want to talk about possible suspects until the killer is caught.

This person has already taken everything that he or she can possibly take from us, Mitchell said. There's that part of us that wants the mystery solved, but it's not going to bring her back.

Friday would have been Loper's last day working at Gleneagles Country Club, where she worked for 16 years and disappeared from the room in which she held classes. She had secured her own space at another Plano fitness club on Dallas Parkway, not far from Gleneagles.

Her friends said she was very excited about her new opportunity.

In lieu of flowers, family and friends of Loper ask that donations be made to help secure her 8-year-old son's future. Checks can be made payable to Jake Loper Trust and will be taken in care of the Ferguson Law Group, address 2500 Dallas Parkway, Suite 260; Plano, TX 75093.

Email: sstoler@wfaa.com

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