Gerardo Roque and his girlfriend lived and worked together on a horse farm. Together they had two children. First came their little daughter Maria Socorro Danforth, 2, then their little son Carlos Diego Danforth, 1.
At some point Roque began working elsewhere and recently the relationship came to an end with the girlfriend reportedly asking him to move out. Arrangements were made for him to see their children, but it is said that Roque was distraught over the ending of the relationship.
April 3 rd Roque picked the children up from their daycare about 2:30 pm as the couple had arranged. About 3 pm he called his ex-girlfriend and told her that she had better meet him, that he was intending to hurt their children. He told her he was on the farm and told her where.
She was their mother and she left to find them. Police say when she arrived where she was to meet them she saw Roque’s truck parked along the road and followed a little path into the woods.
Police say she found litte Carlos and Maria there. They were hanging from a tree alongside their father. She called police at 3:11 pm. They responded to the area she directed them to, and said they found the site in the woods by following her screams.
Both police and rescue personnel attempted CPR but were unable to resuscitate the children.
I don’t know why. According to family he did not have a history of mental health problems. He was a happy go lucky Dad. Reportedly he was distraught over the breakup, and wanted to remain close to his children.
Instead he caused those very children pain in the process of taking their lives. He caused pain to their siblings in the loss of their brother and sister. He caused pain to his own family, not only for the taking of his own life- but also for what he did to the children, the children were their relatives also. He caused pain to the children’s other relatives. He caused pain to the community who now have to deal with the memory of what was done to their friends and neighbors. And most of all he caused pain to their mother- the person he was reportedly distraught over.
Many times there is an underlying mental health problem, sometimes there are financial problems or other problems which may play into it, sometimes there is even a confused altrustic reasoning of not abandoning the children. But many times it is a desire to hurt the one who hurt them by leaving or separating.
You see it sometimes in custody cases. The children become the means to an end- and a means to hurt the other. The children who carry their names, who they have always loved, who may look like them or act like them suddenly just become not their children but instead a means to hurt the one they love.
What was the reason for the death of these children? I have no idea. The only person who could answer that question died with them.
Their deaths leave a hole in the fabric of the lives of their Mother, their siblings, their families, their neighbors and their community as well as to society. They will never grow up so that we can find out what good things they have accomplished.
A big thank you to Desiree for the lead on this one. I apologize for the delay in posting it.