A Texas teen and his school teacher mom were fatally shot by his estranged step-father on his 17th birthday this week in a harrowing double murder-suicide, according to reports.
Holly Beverly, 39, who worked at Hope Works Christian Academy, and her son Titus Akins were gunned down in their west Fort Worth apartment early Tuesday, WFAA reported.
The shooter, Timothy Beverly, also 39 — who was not Titus’ biological father — then turned the weapon on himself, The Dallas Morning News reported, citing the medical examiner who listed his cause of death as suicide.
Holly and Timothy Beverly were “estranged spouses that have reportedly been apart for approximately two to three years,” according to the report.
A neighbor told The Fort Worth Star-Telegram that she heard banging, shouting and a man yelling at someone in the home to “give me my boy, give me that boy.”
It was silent for a moment before she heard a shotgun blast.
Holly’s father and Titus’ grandfather Sam Midkiff told WFAA told “we just know that night was a very violent night.”
Holly’s two other children were home at the time, Midkiff said.
“From what I’m hearing, talking to the other kids and stuff….Titus was trying to help his mother,” the grieving grandpa said. “He was like a little hero.”
“Titus was… excuse me…” he said, holding back tears, “was like my little man. He was very smart and always wanting to learn.”
Holly had wanted to be a teacher since she was small, her dad said.
She also “believed in God and she believed God had the answer to a lot,” he added.
Titus was “kind, helpful and exceptionally bright; graduating from high school one year early,” said a GoFundMe page for the family.
Holly “loved Jesus and her family fiercely, and tirelessly provided for her three children as a single mother,” the fundraising page said.