Shayla Snedeker

Shayla Snedeker

Shayla Snedeker (19) was killed by her father in a double murder-suicide

June 9, 2008

A double murder-suicide has left neighbors shaken, and wondering what would make a father kill his wife and daughter, then turn the gun on himself.

Police were called to a home just north of Argos Monday morning.

Police say the husband and wife who lived there had ongoing marital problems and were in the process of getting divorced.

The crime scene tape is gone, but the question remains: Why did it have to end like this?

Dustin Younger stopped at the home to make sure what he had heard really happened.

"It tears me up," he told WSBT News.

He worked with Susan Snedecker.

"We were really close," he said. "She was like a second mother to me."

Police say overnight, Susan's husband Terry shot and killed her, their 19-year-old daughter Shayla, and then turned the gun on himself.

Their 12-year-old son made the gruesome discovery when he woke up.

"He was obviously upset and distraught about what had occurred here," explained Det. Lt. Ward Byers of the Marshall County police. "But he was being a very brave young man, and was able to sit down and talk with us about what occurred and what he observed when he woke up in the morning."

Neighbors were caught off guard.

"They were very good people," said neighbor Michael Hammond. "Terry had been sick, and I had been mowing his yard and stuff for him - just neighbor stuff. This was not anticipated."

Officials at the Argos Community Schools - where Shayla graduated from recently and the 12-year-old still attends - called in extra counselors and their crisis intervention team.

"I know the staff, the individual teachers, and so on are fielding a lot of individual questions and concerns," said Ronald Leichty of the Argos Community Schools.

Many in the small community are now asking why.

"Last time I was here everything was all good," Younger said. "It didn't seem like they had any problems or anything."

Shayla Snedecker was a student at Ancilla College. School officials say they're deeply distressed and still in a state of shock. They also have extra grief counselors on hand.

See post for dear mother Susan Snedeker here.


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