BOSTON - Fifteen First Responders were called to the scene of a tragic double murder-suicide on Christmas Day at a Northeastern University-owned parking garage. When they arrived they were faced with a horrific scene of a mother and her two young children, unconscious on the sidewalk.
The following day, District Attorney Rachael Rollins shared the identity of the mother and her two children; Erin Pascal, 40, of West Roxbury, 4-year-old Allison and 16-month-old Andrew. Police had determined Pascal had jumped from the top of the garage after her children.
"(Wednesday), the unspeakable happened and now we are all struggling to make sense of the circumstances surrounding these deaths," Rollins said.
"For a parent to come to a place in which they harm their children in this way, indicates that their mental health struggles were severe and in need of immediate supports. Mental health issues are not specific to one type of individual. It has many faces. This Christmas Day tragedy demonstrates the urgency of addressing mental health," Rollins shared.
And while the news cycle will plunge ahead with the latest happenings, First Responders who tried to do all they could to save the three are surely still working to make sense of it all.
Due to the sad nature of the incident, Michael MacNeil, the president of the EMS Division of the Boston Police Patrolmen's Association and a paramedic at Boston EMS, has shared that those First Responders were offered Mental Health Services to cope with the tragic case.
"The ripple effect of this is huge," MacNeil said. "They’re dealing with this crisis. And our guys will be dealing with this crisis every Christmas moving forward. A lot of families are going to be impacted by it."
"Kids are tough," MacNeil added. "They leave a bigger scar. We know that the probability of a provider being impacted is much greater when pediatrics are involved," he said. "But they still have a job to do."
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