Tributes paid to mum and two young children after tragic park death
The mum is said to have told her children to hide if anyone approached them, and to lie down on the ground and sleep
A mum and her two young children were found frozen to death, and a third child only survived by seeking help from a stranger, in a devastating incident in America.
Monica Cannady, 35, and her sons Kyle Milton, 9, and Malik Milton, 3, were found on Sunday afternoon in a park in Pontiac, Michigan, according to the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office.
According to Fox 2 Detroit, an autopsy revealed all three died of hypothermia.
A third child, Cannady’s 10-year-old daughter, Lilly, survived the ordeal after seeking help from a stranger after "waking up". She informed the person, who lived near the park, that her family had all died.
Police were called and the girl was taken to a nearby hospital where she is in stable condition.
Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard said during a press conference on Monday that the "tragedy was based in a mental health crisis".
He said Cannady fled her apartment sometime last week allegedly thinking someone was trying to kill her. She then spent Saturday wandering the area and stopping at random homes asking for food but refusing offers of money.
Her relatives reportedly described Cannady's behaviour as paranoid.
Bouchard said that police received calls days in the days before the family was found dead reporting a family was wandering the streets not dressed to survive the weather.
Police searches failed to locate the family, he said.
According to broadcaster WXYZ, the sheriff also revealed that the mum told her children to hide if anyone approached them, and told them to lay down on the ground and sleep.
"The girl that survived woke up," Bouchard said, adding: "No one else did."
A GoFundMe has been established for Cannady’s surviving daughter and as of Wednesday morning almost $16,000 (€14,700) had been raised.
The fundraiser reads: "Hello family, friends, and new friends. Our beloved niece, daughter, cousin, and granddaughter Monica Cannady and two of her three children Kyle (9) and Malik (3) were found deceased. Her 10-year-old daughter Lilly is now left without her mother or brothers.
"Monica was a loving, caring mother to her children, always a hard worker making sure her children were well taken care of.
"Monica did not have insurance for herself or her children. Any amount you can give will greatly be appreciated."
Lilly's father was murdered in 2021, according to WXYZ.