Though police in Benbrook, Texas did not identify the family, neighbors say it is that of Vadym Kholodenko, a concert pianist well-respected in his field.
The Tarrant County medical examiner's office later identified the children as five-year-old Nika Kholodenko, and one-year-old Michela Kholodenko.
According to police reports, law enforcement received a call on Thursday morning and upon arrival at the family's duplex, found the children dead and the mother stabbed.
Police spokesperson David Babcock said that while a cause of death has not been determined for the children, he does know they were not stabbed.
The 31-year-old stabbing victim, Sofya I. Tsygankova, was apparently the estranged wife of Kholodenko and mother to the two girls. She was taken to the hospital with her injuries. At press time, police were still waiting to speak with her about the incident.
The couple had filed for divorce back in November, and hadn't been living together since last August — but according to neighbor Teri Messer, things appeared to be all normal for Tsygankova and the children:
"They were very happy children. She was a very attentive mother. I would see them together jumping on the trampoline. I saw them Wednesday morning. She was putting the children in the car."
Those poor, poor children.
Our thoughts are with them and their loved ones as police search for a suspect and work this horrible, tragic case.