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LENNOX, S.D. (AP) — Counselors are helping students in Lennox deal with the sudden deaths of three family members in the small community of 2,300.

Lincoln County Sheriff Dennis Johnson says the deaths of a couple and 8-year-old boy is likely a case of murder-suicide. While it’s not clear why the boy wasn’t in class Tuesday, Johnson says the couple has other children who were safe at school.

The three were found fatally shot at a home on South Main St. Tuesday morning. Authorities say a handgun was found at the scene.

The Argus Leader says Lennox Superintendent Chad Conaway sent a memo to parents Tuesday afternoon. Conaway said the deaths will have a lasting impact on students and staff and he urged parents to talk to their children with discernment until more facts are known.

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Information from: Argus Leader, http://www.argusleader.com