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Karen Costa Died Trying To Save Son From Harming Himself, Husband Says

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TORONTO — An Ontario man who lost his wife and son to a murder-suicide last week says his wife died trying to stop their son from harming himself.

Around 11 a.m. last Thursday, police found the bodies of Karen Costa, 52, and her son, Jeffrey, 22, at the family home in Richmond Hill, Ont., north of Toronto.

Sam Costa, in a statement released by York Regional Police, says he and his two other children take solace knowing the two are together in heaven. 

York Regional police confirmed the deaths were the result of a murder-suicide and that they aren't looking for any suspects.

Costa says his son had been struggling with mental health issues.

The husband and father says his family has been involved with mental health fundraising efforts over the past 20 years.

"I never thought our lives would be so directly affected and altered by this illness," Costa wrote.

"The void of their sudden loss is unexplainable."

Costa said the family never wavered in their support for their son, a popular undergraduate student at Western University.

"This unspeakable tragedy that occurred in our family home last week was the result of a loving and protective mother trying to save her son from harming himself," Costa wrote.

About 4,000 Canadians kill themselves every year in the country, according to data from Statistics Canada.

Murder-suicides remain rare across the country, according to Statistics Canada, with men making up 95 per cent of those accused of murder-suicide.

"The rate of family-related murder-suicides has generally been declining since peaking in the mid-1980s," according to a report by Statistics Canada.

Sam Costa will now turn his attention to the rest of his family.

"The words of condolences and support we have received have been overwhelming and have brought much comfort to myself and my other two children," he wrote.

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