A fund set up by the City of Haverhill for the children who lost their parents earlier this month to what investigators have called “unattended” deaths has now raised nearly $2,000, according to Mayor James J. Fiorentini.
Fiorentini announced the creation of the fund five days after the couple, a 36-year-old woman and a 39-year-old man, was found unresponsive in a Lamoille Avenue home on the morning of Dec. 6 by their young children. The Department of Children and Families have placed the children, ages 10 and 8, in the custody of a grandmother whom the children contacted first. Final results of autopsies and toxicology screening ordered by investigators could take “quite some time,” according to Carrie Kimball-Monahan, spokesperson for Essex District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett.
“I met with the grandmother of two of the children (today) and she is deeply, deeply grateful and asked me to send my thanks and love to the people of Haverhill. She tells me that the children are back in school and doing as well as can be expected under the circumstances,” Fiorentini said in a post on Facebook.
For the first time, an official also publicly acknowledged the possible role of drugs in the deaths. Fiorentini said, the children “lost their parents to what appears to be heroin overdoses.”
“We know that there are other children affected also by this terrible scourge and we are reaching out to them,” Fiorentini said.
Those who wish to contribute may send donations to:
City of Haverhill Fund for the Children
Treasurer’s Office, Room 114
4 Summer St.
Haverhill MA 01830
Or drop off at any branch of Pentucket Bank.