Fla. Fire Rescue Lieutenant Kills Wife, Then Himself Shortly After Couple Celebrated 1st Wedding Anniversary

The deceased parents leave behind four children

<p>Andrea Nicole Yarbrough/Facebook</p> Andrea Yarbrough, Shawn Yarbrough

Andrea Nicole Yarbrough/Facebook

Andrea Yarbrough, Shawn Yarbrough

Authorities in St. Johns County, Fla., are investigating the apparent murder-suicide of a fire rescue lieutenant they say shot and killed his wife of one year, leaving four children without a mother and a father.

On Thursday, June 13, at about 9:20 p.m., St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office deputies found the bodies of  St. Johns County Fire Rescue Lieutenant Shawn Yarbrough, 46, and his wife, financial advisor Andrea Nicole Nahrup Yarbrough, 34, in the bathroom of their home in the Entrada subdivision of St. Augustine, the sheriff’s office said in a news release.

Andrea’s death is considered a homicide and her husband’s is considered a suicide, the sheriff’s office said.

Autopsies showed that both died of gunshot wounds, according to the chief medical examiner for the District 23 Medical Examiner’s Office,  according to the sheriff’s office.

“The family is trying to make sense of everything,” the Yarbrough family said in a statement, First Coast News reports.

“At this time we would just like to state that she was very loved and she will be very missed by family, friends and anyone else who has crossed paths with her.”

The couple had just marked their one-year anniversary and celebrated with their four children Andrea’s sister, Olivia Martin, told ActionNewsJax. 

The violence came to light earlier that day when Andrea’s mother, Deborah Churchill, asked police to conduct a welfare check at the home Andrea shared with Shawn.

Churchill told deputies that she became concerned because she hadn’t heard from her daughter or son-in-law since that morning despite calling them repeatedly, according to the FIBRS Incident Report obtained by PEOPLE.

Churchill said she picked up her granddaughter from their house that morning, but didn’t have any contact with Andrea or Shawn because her granddaughter exited the house alone and said her parents were sleeping, the incident report says.

Shawn didn’t show up for work that day, either.

When police, fire and rescue personnel arrived and entered through the unlocked front door, they found a shell casing and blood under a closed bathroom door on the second floor.

Inside they found a deceased male later identified as Shawn in a prone position on the floor with his head covered in blood and a deceased female later identified as Andrea sitting with her back against the wall with a gunshot wound to the chest, the release says.

Neighbors said the couple was active in the community and that they had just seen them last weekend.

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“She was on the HOA board here and did a lot for the neighborhood,” one neighbor who did not want to be identified told Action News Jax. “Us neighbors are struggling to find our peace, and we are just so sad. We really need each other right now.”

Andrea’s family has started a GoFundMe for her daughter, Lily.

“She is a tender eleven years old, with her whole life still ahead of her,” organizers Taylor Churchill and Marvin said in the GoFundMe. “Lily is suddenly and temporarily without the security of her mom, no health insurance, and, as of now, the family is unsure of any life insurance or benefits she may be entitled to.

“Lily and Marsh (her dog) will need to adjust to living with her loving grandparents in a new and strange world. Will you please find it in your heart to give some assistance to help pay for immediate healthcare costs and other necessities during this difficult transitional time of great loss and pain for a young girl thrust into adulthood. Any and all help is greatly appreciated. Thank you.”

If you are experiencing domestic violence, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, or go to thehotline.org. All calls are toll-free and confidential. The hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages.

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