Ginny Vice said everyone could see how beautiful her sister was. With cascading blonde hair, blue eyes and a wide, pretty smile, Cayce Vice stood out from the crowd.
“She was a beauty,” Vice said. “She was a real girly girl. She loved clothes and all the pretty things.”
Even when she was 12 years old, Ginny Vice said she had to warn Cayce to stay out of her makeup. The trouble was that deep down, Cayce didn’t see how beautiful and special she was, Ginny Vice said. Her sister always seemed to need someone else to tell her.
“She was naïve with men,” Vice said. “She was always searching for love.”
Her sister said that need for attention is why she thinks Cayce fell into a troubled relationship with Joshua Tremaine Jones. It’s part of the reason she let him back into her life after she was beaten up. It’s part of the reason they will say goodbye to her at a memorial service today, her family said.
Cayce Vice, 21, was found shot in her bed Saturday in the apartment she shared with Jones. The Richmond County Sheriff’s Office has obtained warrants against him for murder and weapons charges. He is also charged with murder in the slaying of Aiken Public Safety Master Cpl. Sandra E. Rogers.
Ginny Vice said she stepped into the role of mother for her half sister after Cayce’s mother died, and their father, Howard Vice, brought her to stay with them in Augusta.
For a while, Cayce lived in their home in the Montclair subdivision. She attended Tutt Middle School, played clarinet in the band and hung out at the neighborhood pool during the summer, like many other kids.
Cayce was always outgoing and well-liked, Ginny Vice said.
“She wasn’t involved in cliques,” she said. “She wanted everybody to be her friend.”
Boys, however, became a problem when she was at Westside High School, her father said. She was working part-time at Domino’s Pizza on Washington Road, when “she feel in love with the pizza boy,” he said.
She was 17. The relationship lasted less than a year, but during that time, Cayce dropped out of school and moved in with her boyfriend, he said.
“I talked with the police about it, but they said there was nothing they could do,” Howard Vice said. “She wouldn’t listen.”
After the romance ended, Cayce obtained her GED and went to work, sometimes holding two jobs at a time, her sister said.
“She was always a responsible, good worker,” she said.
Howard Vice said Cayce picked up her big sister’s good habits. She could cook and clean, she kept a neat house and did not drink or dabble in drugs, he said. But she always differed with her family in one area.
“She would never take my advice on men,” Ginny Vice said.
She said her sister would not discuss her relationship with Jones with her or any family members because she knew they did not approve.
“We did everything we could,” Vice said. “But you can’t physically do something to stop it, not legally.”
Howard Vice said he never saw any abusive behavior from Jones when he lived with Vice and his daughter. It wasn’t until after Jones moved out, Vice said, that the beating occurred.
“He wasn’t crazy,” Vice said, referring to Jones’ bizarre behavior in a Monday bond hearing in Aiken. “I never saw him act like that around me.”
After the assault, in which police obtained a warrant for Jones’ arrest, Howard Vice said he stayed with his daughter for a while until she told him “she needed time alone.”
He didn’t know Jones had come back until the police called him on Saturday, he said.
Ginny Vice said the family is struggling to understand what happened and how to move forward without Cayce.
“People ask how you feel, but there is no feel,” she said. “There’s just numb, nothing to feel. You can’t feel anything.”