Washington School District mourns loss of Cadenbach brothers - KMOV.com

Washington School District mourns loss of Cadenbach brothers

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Owen and Ethan Cadenbach were kidnapped and killed by their father Christopher on Saturday. Credit: KMOV Owen and Ethan Cadenbach were kidnapped and killed by their father Christopher on Saturday. Credit: KMOV
WASHINGTON, Mo. (KMOV.com) -

Monday is the first day back to school since the Cadenbach brothers' tragic death.

Owen and Ethan attended the Washington School District. Dr. Lori VanLeer, the superintendent of the school district, said she was shocked when she heard the boys’ father shot and killed them before taking his own life Saturday night. 

"It takes a little time and I'm not even sure any of us are even there yet to process," said VanLeer.

The entire district is mourning the loss of the 4 and 5-year-olds. People described them as fun-loving and happy little boys.

"Two beautiful children, I think it's hard for teachers. You can't be prepared for something like this and in kindergarten and pre-k those are our babies," said VanLeer.

Owen was a pre-k student at the Early Learning Center and his older brother was a kindergarten at Washington West.

VanLeer said, "We haven't had a lot of time to get to know the family and be entrenched in the school system because they were so young but it's just a tragic loss and it's difficult for any of us to process."

The school had guidance counselors on hand Monday. Hundreds of people are turning to Facebook during this trying time, sharing memories and sending thoughts and prayers to the community.

"We've had nothing but comment after comment, so I know that even though folks learned that these are students in our school district and they didn't know them or maybe they did know them, we're all hurting for the family right now," said VanLeer.

The family was working on funeral arrangements Monday. The school plans to help pay for the services. If you would like too donate, you can do so by clicking here.

Copyright 2016 KMOV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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