Nicholas Mavrakis was a military veteran with PTSD who authorities say shot and killed his entire family on Father’s Day in Ohio before taking his own life, according to a family member.
The tragedy unfolded in Jackson Township near Canton, Ohio. Found dead of gunshot wounds inside the family home near Canton, Ohio were Mavrakis, his wife Lesley, son Ace, 13, and daughter Pippa, 5, Jackson Township police wrote.
A family member, Zach Mavrakis, shared a photo of the family on Facebook and wrote, “You will forever be missed! Words can’t describe what our family is going through right now but all of you were so loved. You were a rock and strong pillar for everybody. I wouldn’t be where I’m at if it wasn’t for you guys. And I’m sure a lot of us can say the same! I just can’t believe this is happening right now. I love you guys so much! Look down on us.”
The township is about five miles from Canton, Ohio.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Lesley’s Sister Called 911 & Reported That Her “Husband Has…PTSD From the Military & He’s Been Having Problems’
Police wrote that the family “succumbed to gunshot wounds, believed to be from a domestic incident.”
The police statement said that at 4:09 p.m. on June 20, a welfare check was requested in the 6800 block of Salerno St., NW Jackson Township.
They located “four deceased family members. This incident Is being investigated as a domestic dispute that turned deadly. At this time it is believed there are no other persons involved in the incident.”
It is being investigated as a “triple homicide, suicide.” Police have not yet said who they think pulled the trigger.
In a 911 call, Lesley Mavrakis’s sister told a dispatcher, “I don’t know what’s going on. I know her husband has like PTSD from the military and he’s been having problems.”
Crying, she said that her sister wasn’t answering the daughter. She said the family’s dogs weren’t barking either. You can listen to the 911 call at CantonRep.com.
The newspaper reported that Nicholas Mavrakis spent 20 years in the Army, retiring in 2013 as a staff sergeant and serving overseas in both Afghanistan and Iraq.
2. Mavrakis Suffered From PTSD Due to Service in the U.S. Army 101st Airborne Division, His Brother Also Says
Tony Mavrakis, Nicholas Mavrakis’s brother, posted a heartbreaking message on the Wounded Warriors Project Facebook page.
“Yesterday on Father’s Day 2021, my brother, Nicholas Mavrakis, whom served with The U.S. Army 101st Airborne Division for 22 years, and suffered with PTSD as a result of this service, killed his wife and two children,then himself. If you served with my brother and/or know someone that has,please help me notify his fellow service members of this tragic event,” he wrote.
In the comment thread, he asked people to bring “awareness to this story,” saying that many other military personnel “suffer daily.” What scared him most, he wrote, was “how fast he changed into someone else.”
Another relative, Zach Mavrakis, wrote on Facebook, “A lot of people got something to say about the situation. If it’s not some type of positive don’t say anything. Nobody knows the situation and we don’t need to see you’re negative thoughts. I know what it looks like and how we’re feeling as a family. We don’t need the outside opinions.
3. Pippi Loved Pop Tarts & Mac N Cheese With Unicorns & Rainbows
Tony Mavrakis also posted a tribute to Pippa.
“They named her Pippa,” he wrote. “Her favorite color is pink, she liked to run, jump and laugh. We would play from sun up till time for her to go to bed. She mostly ate candy, pop tarts, lucky charms and gold fish crackers…. sometime we could get her to eat Mac n Cheese, the unicorn and rainbow kind.”
He added, “They were perfect…and I know we’re not supposed to have favorites, but Pippa was pure joy to be with.”
4. A Petition Was Started in Ace’s Name to Ensure a Morning of Silence Before Football Games
A family member started a petition called, “Respect for Ace.”
It reads, “Ace didn’t get the time here he deserved. He did everything he could to make sure people were happy and having fun. He was the sweetest kid ever. He always lit up the room. Ace deserves a moment of silence every Friday before football games. We miss him dearly and he would love to know we are still thinking about him.”
The petition has more than 2,000 signatures. A woman who signed wrote, “Anything for this kid, his mom and sister. They did not deserve this. My son knew him well.” Another noted, “He was such a great kid!”
5. Neighbors Described Seeing Nicholas Mavrakis Playing Football With His Son
By all accounts, the family had seemed like a loving one.
Neighbors told the Canton Rep that they would see the father throwing a football to his son in the front yard.
The story described an SUV in the family’s garage, a trampoline in the back yard, and a “neatly manicured” lawn.