CUMBERLAND, R.I. — The police chief identified the married couple who died in a shooting at their home Wednesday, but said the circumstances remained under investigation.
Eric Huard, 51, and Courtney Huard, 42, were found dead after police were called about a shooting at their home on 28 Birchwood Drive. They left 2 young sons and a daughter.
The couple’s deaths are considered to be an isolated incident and “not a random act of violence,” Police Chief Matthew J. Benson said in a statement Thursday. No further information was released; the deaths remain under investigation by the Cumberland police, state police, and attorney general’s office.
“I would like to reiterate my deepest condolences and sympathies to the Huard family, including any friends and family and especially the three children left during this most difficult time,” Benson said.
The couple had been married for nearly 17 years and had lived for about a decade in their Cape home on the quiet semi-circle street near the Arnold Mills Reservoir. Their neighbors said the couple were friendly, and there were no outward signs of strife.
Eric Huard worked for National Grid, and previously spent 19 years as the aquatics sports program director at the MacColl Field YMCA in Lincoln, according to his LinkedIn page.
Courtney Huard was a registered dietician and nutritionist, who recently founded the True Self private practice for children and adults with eating disorders. She’d previously had a private practice in Cumberland and Providence. She was also vice president for a charity, The Ed and Kathy Carpenter Foundation, for a Cumberland couple who died in 2011.
Their neighbors said they saw a loving family. They were at a loss to understand what happened.
“They were wonderful neighbors, a wonderful family, and wonderful kids,” Clara Neville, whose daughter was friends with Courtney Huard, told the Globe on Wednesday.
Polly and Robert Boynes, who’ve lived on Birchwood Drive for 50 years, were shaken.
“Our granddaughter taught all three kids at Community School,” Boynes said Wednesday. “She is really distraught.”
Violent crime is rare in Cumberland — the last homicide was seven years ago — and rarer still for this neighborhood off Nate Whipple Highway.
Mayor Jeff Mutter said it was a tragic day for the town.
“We continue to keep the Huard family, friends, and loved ones in our thoughts and prayers today. We ask that you continue to respect the privacy of this family and their loved ones at this time,” Mutter said in a Facebook post. “I thank our first responders for diligently responding to a call that none of them ever want to receive. I am also appreciative of the Cumberland Police Department and the State Police who continue to investigate this tragic matter.”
He added: “Be good to each other, these are hard days.”
This article has been updated with additional information and photos from the scene.