On Aug. 20, 2006, Fielder's body was found dismembered in suitcases in Back Creek near the community of Shanghai in western Berkeley County. Weeks later, Fielder's ex-husband, Stephen R. Fielder of Bunker Hill, W.Va., was charged in her murder. His trial is set for November.
Since Fielder's reported death, Johnson confirmed that the couple volunteered to file the necessary paperwork to become administrators of Fielder's estate, an act that the Berkeley County Prosecuting Attorney's office described on Tuesday as "very generous."
"She didn't get an obituary," said Linda Johnson, who said she first met Fielder in 1999.
Raised by adoptive parents in Winchester, Va., Debra Fielder did not have any known surviving family members, Johnson said.
Before their divorce in 2002, Debra and Stephen Fielder, the Johnsons and another couple were members of the Free Radicals, a country, classic rock band, she said.
"She was a great singer," Johnson said. The couple said they had good reason to believe Fielder had done some studio recording in her earlier years and also performed in Las Vegas in backup work. Fielder was always the lead singer in their band and a perfectionist with her music, Johnson said.
"(Her voice) was sultry and clear and had a lot of depth to it," Johnson said.
When he first met Fielder about 10 years ago, Dennis Johnson said it was like "instant meld."
"She had good energy, real good energy," he said.
Though the Johnsons were able to organize the service, Fielder's remains will be kept at the West Virginia Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Charleston, W.Va., until the pending legal allegations are resolved. The couple plans to eventually have Fielder's remains interred next to her adoptive father's grave site at Shenandoah Memorial Park in Winchester.