Authorities have found a missing mother and her daughter, but not the way anyone wanted. Dawna Faye Roe, 51, and Gabrielle “Gabby” Michelle Roe, 16, died in a suspected murder-suicide, the Caldwell Police Department in Idaho said, according to KBOI. The autopsy, including a toxicology report, is pending.
Both law enforcement and the family attributes this tragedy to mental illness.
“It’s obviously a tragedy and a travesty,” Caldwell Police Chief Rex Ingram t0ld the outlet. “I think the bigger issue is mental illness in this country right now and services we need to provide for mentally ill people. And obviously mental illness probably played a factor in this, but unfortunately the police have a tough job and they can’t save everyone.”
“My mom loved Gabby, she absolutely did,” Gabrielle’s sister Mariah Villesca told KTVB. “My mom had six children and Gabrielle was the favorite. So many people thought this would never happen because of how much my mom loved Gabby. So many people didn’t listen to how severe things were. If somebody’s ill, you know, they can appear lucid. You don’t know what’s going on in their mind.”
The Roes were both last seen June before going on a camping trip, authorities said.
“There is concern for both Dawna and Gabrielle’s safety,” stated the missing persons notice from the Idaho Criminal Intelligence Center. Authorities cryptically announced on Friday that Gabby and Dawn were found.
In another post, deputies in Oregon said the Roes were discovered in Dawna’s van near the 1710 road northwest of the community of Drewsey.
Deputies responded to what they described as a “remote location” regarding a report of a van with a person dead inside. Responding law enforcement discovered a second body, they said.
A GoFundMe campaign to support the family $11,926 raised of a $20,000 goal as of Sunday evening. Gabby lived with Down syndrome, and she was mentally between the ages of 6 and 7 years old, family reportedly said.
Villesca said that their mother loved with an undiagnosed mental illness, and that this tragedy could have been prevented, according to KTVB. Nothing happened, however, after she and another sister called Child Protective Services in 2021, she said.
She suggested her sister Gabby fell through the cracks.
“Gabrielle, we call her Gabby,” Villesca said. “She was sassy. She was clever. She was witty. She had the purest heart.”
[Image via the Idaho Criminal Intelligence Center]
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