Funeral services will be held today in the Quebec City area for two children who died in a fire believed to be started by their father, who also died in the blaze.
The coroner's office has confirmed the bodies of Lindsey and Karen Brillant-Marcoux, age 13 and 11, were found alongside that of their father, Jocelyn Marcoux, in a burning garage at the family's home in Warwick, about 140 kilometres south west of Quebec City.
Autopsy results have not been released, and officials are waiting on the final coroners' report on the situation.
A bitter custody battle
Marcoux and the children's mother were involved in a custody dispute at the time of the deaths.
In Quebec City, Marcoux's lawyer told CBC News her client had failed to appear in family court for a scheduled appearance July 10. He had custody of the children, she said, but the hearing was to modify that arrangement.
Joel Croteau, who drove to the home on his way to work after hearing reports of the fire, told CBC News he worked with Marcoux and described the discovery as "incomprehensible."
He said the two children had been living with Marcoux for about a year and he was involved in a custody dispute with his former partner.
Dozens of photos on Marcoux's Facebook page show two smiling children posing at family birthdays, on holidays and camping trips. The same trailer and pickup truck that appear in the photos were parked in front of the home on Richardson Street on the morning of July 10. when emergency crews arrived.
Marcoux's last post to the website was logged at 1:14 a.m. July 10. It is an image of an email that Marcoux appears to have mailed to himself, dated earlier that evening. In the two-page letter, he describes his version of the custody battle and expresses frustration with the system.
"For all the fathers out there, it's official," the letter, written in French, reads."If you don't get justice yourself, you'll never have it."
Neighbours heard explosion
Firefighters responding to a call for a fire discovered the bodies in a detached garage on Richardson Street at about 3 a.m. Neighbours had reported hearing a noise they described as an explosion.
Neighbours said Marcoux's son, Lindsay, and daughter, Karen, also lived in the home.
Neighbours in the small community, located about two hours northeast of Montreal, said they were shocked to see emergency crews on the quiet street. They said they had never heard of anything like this happening in their town.