Police have identified the woman found dead Tuesday morning in the parking lot of a West Anchorage church as 44-year-old Marya Abramczyk.
While homicide detectives continue to investigate Abramczyk's suspicious death, they have not yet said how she died or if they believe she was killed by someone.
Passers-by found Abramczyk's body in the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship's parking lot, at Turnagain Street and West 32nd Avenue, about 8:15 a.m. Tuesday. A police spokesman first described the death as a homicide. He later retracted that statement, calling the case a death investigation.
After scouring the parking area where Abramczyk was found, crime scene investigators and other police officers moved to Abramcyzk's condo, about a quarter-mile away at 3112 W. 34th Ave.
Condo association president Alicia Amberg said the police department's Major Crime Scene Unit's vehicle and several other police vehicles were parked outside the gray condo buildings from noon to about 6 p.m. Tuesday while investigators came and went from Abramczyk's unit.
Amberg said Abramczyk lived alone, except for when her minor son stayed there. She said Abramczyk was quiet, someone who kept to herself, and didn't appear to have ever had questionable people at her home.
"It's sad. Very sad. She seemed like a nice lady," Amberg said.
Abramczyk was a special education support staff member at Begich Middle School, according to the Anchorage School District, which had employed Abramczyk since 2002. School district spokeswoman Heidi Embley said counselors would help console students and other school staff, with whom Abramczyk had the closest contact.
In a written statement, Gary Holthaus, minister at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, said Abramczyk's death appeared to be unrelated to the church. This Sunday's service would seek to express the congregation's grief over the incident, Holthaus said.
"This is a tragic and disturbing event, and we are sure it has had a profound effect on the deceased's family and friends, and on our members, all of whom believe in the sacredness of life," Holthaus said.
Reach Casey Grove at firstname.lastname@example.org or 257-4589.