Medical bills might have cost three children their lives

Photo from GoFundMe page of Astra Volk.

These kids — Arianna Talmage, 6, Aidan Talmage, 10, and Tyler Talmage, 14 — are all dead now. So is their mother.

Their bodies were found in their Grand Forks home on Thursday morning after the school district asked police to check on the family.

Police aren’t yet saying what happened. They were all killed by gunshots. A gun was found in the home, and it’s not that hard to figure out the most likely scenario.

All that’s left is for us to look at the picture and wonder if there’s something we all could have done to keep them alive.

The Grand Forks Herald reports today that their mother — Astra Volk, 35 — the head of the PTO in the school district — had posted a GoFundMe campaign (now removed) only last week.

She was struggling financially because of medical bills.

She and her two sons had been hospitalized for treatment of bipolar disorder, the campaign said, and the cost had bankrupted them.

“I work full time but my wages have recently been garnished for medical bills,” she wrote. “I’m looking for help with 1 month’s bills to help get on our feet and look for a second job. I am trying to stay positive so I do not end up back in the hospital.”

She had a job at Cirrus Aircraft, but she got help from food pantries.