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    Aug 08, 2016

    US family of 5 shot dead in apparent murder suicide


    A FAMILY of five found dead in an apparent murder suicide in the American state of Pennsylvania over the weekend include a two-year-old who underwent heart transplant a week after birth in early 2014, local newspapers reported.

    The police identified the five - who all died of gunshot wounds in their home in Sinking Spring town, some 80km north-west of Philadelphia - as parents Mark and Megan Short and their children Liana, Mark and Willow, reported the Reading Eagle daily.

    The bodies were discovered at 3pm on Saturday.

    As of yesterday, the authorities had not yet said which person they think pulled the trigger, and the motive of the shooting was under investigation.

    Although the children's ages were not given out, Willow was clearly two years old based on previous news stories on her recovery from the heart transplant.

    The family were featured in the New York Times last year in a story that talked about their struggle to get anti-rejection medication for Willow.

    Mrs Short wrote frequently in Facebook of her struggles with post-traumatic stress disorder that arose from having a chronically ill child, reported the Heavy news website.

    "I was so focused on learning everything I could to keep my child alive and to minimise the impact on my other children that I didn't see the full impact that it had on me," she noted in one recent post.

    Mr Short's Facebook page is filled with photos of his family, including his wife, whom he called the most beautiful girl he had ever seen.

    The NBC 10 Philadelphia affiliate station reported that distraught relatives of the Shorts hugged one another as they gathered outside the home waiting for news on Saturday.