Friends of Daniel Castrillon, man who deputies say killed his kids and himself, say he 'loved' Sebastian and Susana Castrillon

5:36 PM, Oct 28, 2013   |    comments
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Video: Friends of dad who killed kids: 'He loved them'

Deputies say Daniel Castrillon-Oregga shot and killed his two children before turning the gun on himself over the weekend. Photo via Facebook.
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Brooksville, FL -- Friends and neighbors -- even those aware of his wife's recent divorce filing -- thought Daniel Castrillon would never harm his own children.

But Castrillon, 39, felt very alone, they say. His family lives in Colombia, he had few friends, and when he thought he was being "replaced" as he posted on his Facebook page, they say he quickly spiraled into a depression.

See Also: Father shoots son & daughter, turns gun on self

Jose Guerrero was brought to tears, blaming himself for missing the signs. After speaking with Castrillon on Friday night, Jose and his wife Francia now realize the were perhaps the last to see Castrillon and his two children.

The Guerreros have two young sons of their own, who played with the children often.

"What hurts the most is, how do I tell my kids that they're not around anymore?" said Jose, crying.

Francia describes Castrillon as a doting father. His daughter Susana was growing up fast, and loved to play on her laptop computer, she says.

Sebastian -- a year younger -- liked soccer and barbecue sauce. She mentioned that, because it reminded her of what a good father Daniel was to Sebastian.

"His dad was always carrying barbecue sauce in the car all the time, because we didn't have barbecue sauce at home," she said.

But they say Castrillon was in a downward spiral of hopelessness.

His wife, Luz Jimenez, had not only filed for divorce, but Daniel was saddened to learn she was already seeing another man whom the children referred to as a step-father.

The Guerreros say little Sebastian tried to reassure Castrillon. Francia overheard him, telling his father, "Papi, you're still my dad. You're still my dad."

Neighbors were sickened by the news, and shocked as well. They say there was never a sign that Castrillon would harm his children.

Tammy Howarth, who lives down the street, called it senseless.

"It wasn't necessary," she said. "The kids don't have anything to do with any marital fights."

"The most heartbreaking thing is that you can have neighbors that are hurting and you weren't there... that you didn't know about it," added neighbor Elaine Sexton.

At nearby Chocachatti Elementary School, where the children had attended 2nd and 3rd grade, Sebastian and Susana's teachers were provided substitutes. Grief counselors were also on hand to address parent and student concerns.

Ray Gordon, a spokesperson with Hernando County Schools, says they will likely be needed even more on Tuesday, as many kids had not yet heard about the tragedy.

"They were prepared for the students, but for the most part they were unaware when they got to school today and probably best that they learn that from their parents," said Gordon.

The sheriff's office says the deputies who went into the home to make this sad discovery were the same deputies who, just last month,  had responded to another case where a man had killed his wife and child before taking his own life.

Those deputies are also being offered special counseling.

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