The son-in-law of a woman killed by feral hogs said she was a hard worker who spent years helping others.
Tony Sandles Jr. said Tuesday his mother-in-law, Christine Rollins, 59, was like family to the 84-year-old man and his 79-year-old wife who she had taken care of for about a year-and-a-half. He added Rollins had been a caretaker for about 40 years.
“She wasn’t an employee when she worked for these families,” Sandles said. “That is how they treated her. She was treated like an aunt, or a grandma or a mother. She was the most, and I mean this dearly, amazing woman, mother, mother-in-law, aunt and grandmother, and sister. Her heart was worth more than gold.”
Sandles said Rollins was not married but had one daughter, which is his wife, and two grandchildren.
“She could outwork just about any man at her age,” Sandles said. “She had asthma, but she was one of those workers that would shame a young man.”
Sandles said he is still in shock over how Rollins died.
“It is unbelievable,” he said. “I am still trying to find ways to get past it, and I am asking is this reality or a dream. It just doesn’t seem real.”
Sandles said some had made comments about Rollins living in rural areas, that it was too dangerous.
“That has nothing to do with it,” Sandles said. “She was very cautious. If she had seen the hogs, she would not have gotten out of the car.”
Sandles said funeral plans had not yet been finalized, but once they were, it would be held in Liberty County.
Rollins had arrived at the home of an elderly couple around 6:30 a.m. in the 4000 block of State Highway 61 in Anahuac on Sunday when she was apparently attacked by a pack of wild feral hogs. The home is situated on 10 to 12 acres of pasture and woods.
Rollins was killed by the hogs in gruesome fashion, according to Chambers County Sheriff Brian Hawthorne. He said Rollins had a severe head wound and several other injuries consistent with an animal bite.
“She bled to death because the arteries had been severed and devoured,” Hawthorne said. “It was one of the worst scenes I have ever seen.”
Hawthorne said it appears Rollins had simply pulled up to the house before sunrise, got out of her car, and was going to the house when the hogs attacked her. The attack seems to be unprovoked.
The elderly man who lives at the house found Rollins and first called his son, who in turn called the sheriff’s office.
“But he disturbed some of the evidence waiting on his son and us to get there,” Hawthorne said. “But he is 84 and has dementia.”
Hawthorne added there were some dogs in the area.
“But I think they ran off the hogs,” he said. “The dogs knew her since she had been working there for a while.”
Hawthorne said feral hogs are a problem pretty much anywhere in Texas, but particularly in the southeast and south portions of the state.
“These areas are covered with hogs,” Hawthorne said.
While some legislation in Texas has made it easier to hunt the wild hogs, such as allowing them to be hunted from a helicopter, the hogs seem to multiple easily.
“Every hog that gets killed is one less hog,” Hawthorne said. “The problem is they have twice as many piglets as dogs do, and I think they breed up to three times a year. One female hog can make anywhere from 50 to 60 babies a year. While some hunt to help clear out the population, the problem is they are so prolific.”