By Jon Herskovitz
(Reuters) – The five people who died in a murder suicide in Pennsylvania over the weekend were identified as two parents and their three children, all of whom were shot to death, a local district attorney said on Sunday.
The parents in the incident that took place in Sinking Spring, some 60 miles east of the state capital Harrisburg, were identified as Mark and Megan Short. The three children were not named, the Berks County District Attorney’s office said in an official Facebook post. (https://www.facebook.com/BerksDA/)
The district attorney said there was a note left at the scene but did not elaborate on its contents. Media reports said the family was having financial trouble because it needed to purchase costly medication for a baby who had to have a heart transplant.
“This is an apparent tragic domestic incident,” the district attorney’s office said, adding there had been domestic issues between the husband and wife.
It added a handgun was found at the scene near one of the adults and that the family’s dog was also shot to death.
The Reading Eagle, a local newspaper, said this weekend it published a story about the family in 2014 after its newest member, a then five-month-old girl named Willow, had received a heart transplant.
It also said the family was featured in a 2015 New York Times article discussing the difficulties it was facing in obtaining and using the medication Willow needed to keep her from rejecting her transplanted heart.
The New York Times reported in its article that a Sinking Spring family of the same name was in a touch-and-go position each month on fresh supplies of medication because of stringent rules applied by a specialty pharmacies.
“You just feel like every month, you’re hoping that they don’t mess it up,” Megan Short was quoted as saying by the newspaper.
(Reporting by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by David Gregorio)