Murder/Suicide: End-of-Life Plan for Jackson Couple
Paul and Mary Matteson died Tuesday at the Ridge Crest Health Campus in Summit Township, when Paul shot Mary, then turned the gun on himself. Video by fox47news.comvideo
"This happened out of love. Nothing else but love," said Jerri Bartlett-Boone.
Paul and Mary Matteson were like parents to her, living in the house beside her since she was a child: "They did all kinds of things together. They were always together, and now they're still together ... this wasn't a bad thing."
The couple were approaching their 90s. They never had any kids of their own, so instead, they took care of their neighbors: babysitting, fixing their bikes, and being there for anything they needed.
"I don't want anybody to think bad about them because he loved her and she loved him," continued Bartlett-Boone.
She says Mary had been suffering from Dementia, and had just underwent hip replacement surgery. It was getting tough for the couple to take their evening walks they'd taken every night for decades, and even tougher for Paul to see Mary in pain.
Jackson County Sheriff Steve Rand says he has no reason to believe this was done out of anger, or even confusion, but instead, something that seemed to be thoroughly planned out over the span of at least a few days.
"This was a very isolated incident; there was never anybody else in danger. He went into the room initially, then went back out and retrieved a bag which we believe the gun was in, and then came back in," said Rand.
Now, Jerri can only try to take care of what's left behind of the Mattesons: "I'm not letting that lawn die. That was [Paul's] pride and joy, so we went out and started watering."
Making sure their grass still stays the greenest in the neighborhood.
Neighbors say the Mattesons got married when Paul returned home from serving overseas during World War II. They also believe the two had never been apart overnight until Mary's surgery.