A close-knit Oklahoma community is coming together in grief following a murder-suicide over the weekend involving a young mother and her two daughters, who were only 5 and 6.
Police in Lawton, Oklahoma, confirm Krystle Easley and her young children, Emma and Kristo, were shot to death on Saturday by Russell Cliburn, Krystle’s ex-boyfriend and the girls’ father.
According to investigators, after committing the three murders, Cliburn turned the gun on himself, taking his own life.
Police who responded to the scene are said to be recovering from the horror of the killings.
An exact motive has not been discussed publicly.
Family members fought through their pain to speak to KSWO about the victims.
Levi Easley, Krystle’s brother, said relatives had expressed concerns in the past about Russell, but “I never would have thought that this would have happened to them … at all.”
The mourning uncle said his nieces “were just full of life,” calling Kristo “a dancing fool” and describing Emma as a typical little girl who “just loved Barbie dolls and she loved to color. Just thinking of them puts a smile on my face.”
Easley said the sisters “were inseparable. They held hands and fought and played … just like a normal family. They were just a lot of fun.”
Krystle was a special education teacher who worked at Carriage Hills Elementary in Lawton.
Speaking to KSWO, the school’s principal, Lesa Sparks, said “Krystle was a wonderful person who never was negative. She brought joy to everybody. Her students, whether they were in her class or not in her class, she just touched their lives in a way that is irreplaceable.”
Sparks added: “Her being gone is just leaving an emptiness with all of us.”
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Funerals for Krystle and her daughters will happen this weekend.
All three will be buried together.
The family has established a GoFundMe campaign to help defray some of their funeral expenses.
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