Chicago Police

Mom of Twins Killed by Father in Murder-Suicide Releases Emotional Statement

The mother of two 10-year-old children who were killed by their father in an apparent murder-suicide last month released an emotional statement remembering her children. 

"My beautiful twins loved one another in a way that cannot be put into words. They were each other’s protector," Nicoler Derr Sanders said in a statement released by victim advocate group Chicago Survivors. "I never thought in a million years that they would need to be protected from the man who was supposed to be their father."

The twin siblings, who she identified as Addison and Mason Sanders, were killed in an apparent murder-suicide in the West Rogers Park neighborhood on the North Side, authorities said.

A 45-year-old man was found dead at 11:04 a.m. on Aug. 27 in the hallway of a home in the 6200 block of North Richmond, according to Chicago police. He had suffered a self-inflicted gunshot wound to his face.

The boy and a girl, both 10 years old, were also found with gunshot wounds to their heads, police said. They were both pronounced dead.

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Police spokesperson Anthony Guglielmi tweeted his condolences, on behalf of CPD, to the family affected. "A father, cowardly took the life of his two 10 year old children before turning the gun on himself," he wrote. "The offender had no previous history with the Chicago Police Department."

Derr Sanders said she "there never was any indication" her husband would commit such an act, but added that she did not want to "give this coward anymore media attention."

"This is not about him. It is about my two innocent angels," her statement read. "My children were the light of my life. Twins, my twinkies were loving well rounded kids who primarily lived with me. They had so many friends and loved life to the fullest. For those around me and to those strangers I may never meet but have had the opportunity to read and feel your support I say thank you. I love my children with all my heart. Day by day I will move forward for them and try to repair the damage to my broken heart. Remembering my joy that came from their laughter, their funny stories, our dance parties and watching them grow into these outstanding human beings. I will not close their book, they will live on through me and all those who had the pleasure of meeting them. I will ensure the world continues to remember them and not how we lost them. The best part of their story will be how much they are loved and always will be. Rest in peace now my Twinkies."

A GoFundMe page has been set up to help the mother "in this time of need." As of Friday, it has raised more than $33,000. 

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