A father has died after reportedly filling his home with carbon monoxide, killing his 10-year-old son and critically injuring his daughter, police said.
The children’s mother discovered the harrowing scene Sunday evening when her estranged husband Woo Chang, 41, failed to return from a scheduled visitation with their kids.
Illinois officials raced to the home following the mom’s tragic call where they declared Woo Chang and son Austin dead at the scene.
The six-year-old daughter who has yet to be identified was transported to a nearby hospital where she is in intensive care, said Inverness Police Chief Bob Haas.
While the cause of death has yet to be confirmed, investigators discovered a gasoline-powered generator that was turned on but had run out of fuel, the Daily Herald reported.
The mother had last talked to the children the night before the event, investigators said.
This was the first time police had been called to the home, according to Haas.
“It’s a very sad circumstance, and out thoughts and prayers go out to the family,” he said.
An anonymous next door neighbor said that Austin was a “wonderful kid” and mourned the loss of the child,
“He was truly one of the best kids I knew, and he was so, so sweet,” the neighbor told the Chicago Tribune.
“He put others first and he made me laugh all the time.
“[His sister] is just as great, she is a little sweetheart, and I am prayer that she pulls through.”
The Palatine Township Elementary District 15 confirmed that Austin was a student at Frank C. Whiteley Elementary School in a statement grieving his absence.
“This district is simply heartsick, and in both shock and mourning over the tragic loss of one of our students,” the statement reads.
“Our efforts right now are focused on offering support to staff and students at Frank C. Whiteley where the student attended school.
“It goes without saying that this is a devastating loss for all of us here in District 15, especially as we look to the remainder of the school year where the child’s absence will be felt by classmates and staff.”
The autopsies were scheduled for Monday, according to police.