Family Of 5 Including Baby Heart Transplant Survivor Killed In Murder Suicide

The entire family was found dead in the family living room of their suburban home. 

The family of Willow Short, who had survived heart transplant surgery when she was just days old and whose health struggles had been covered by The New York Times, was found shot to death in their Pennsylvania home. All five family members, 33-year-old mom Megan Short, her husband Mark, 40, their three children, Liana, 8, Mark, 5, Willow, 2, and the family dog were found dead in the living room of their picturesque suburban home, a handgun by the side of one of the dead parents. Police found a handwritten note inside the home though they have yet to identify the shooter.

The Short family had endured much since the arrival of their youngest daughter Willow, who was born with a rare heart defect. She endured multiple surgeries just days into her life and though she slowly recovered, and at times even thrived, maintaining the drug supply to treat her condition remained a constant stress for the family. In a recent post on a website devoted to families that live with congenital heart issues, Megan Short said dealing with Willow’s illness had given her Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and that she suffered from anxiety, nightmares and survivor’s guilt.

Officers were called to the Short family home in Sinking Spring, Pennsylvania, outside Reading, after Megan Short missed a lunch date with a member of her extended family. She didn’t return phone calls, which caused concern and led the relative to call the police. It was then that they made their heartbreaking and gruesome discovery.  

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