Police: Father of heart-transplant toddler killed his family in murder-suicide

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The killer in a murder-suicide that took the lives of a family of five in Berks County, Pennsylvania, has been identified as the father, District Attorney John Adams said Monday.

In this story

  • Mark Short killed his wife and three children, DA says
  • One of his children, Willow Short, survived a heart transplant when she was 6 days old

Mark Short, 40, killed his 33-year-old wife, Megan, and the couple’s three children, 8-year-old Liana, 5-year-old Mark Jr., and 2-year-old Willow.

Willow was a heart transplant survivor whose story made national headlines.

Police found their bodies in their Sinking Springs home on August 6 dead from gunshot wounds, along with the family dog. Mark Short left a note admitting to buying a gun and killing his family, Adams said at a news conference. The note was likely written after Short killed his family.

Megan Short’s mother called Sinking Spring Police after her daughter missed a lunch date.

The couple had domestic and marital problems and were in the process of separating, Adams said.

A few weeks before her death, Megan Short called 911 after an argument and said she was afraid of her husband, authorities said.