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Andy Fockler

Heroic husband dies shielding wife from gunfire

by Jacquelyn Gray, Contributor

A Weirsdale, Florida, man and his stepson were fatally shot on Sunday morning during a suspected home invasion.

WFTV reports two masked suspects entered the home and fired shots, killing Bailey Zylo, 18, and Andy Fockler, 38. During the gunfire, Fockler shielded his wife, Janey, who survived the incident. Bailey was reportedly shot as he slept in bed.

John Zylo, Janey’s father and Bailey’s grandfather, told the Ocala Star-Banner that the gunmen demanded money but took a box of guns. John claimed his daughter, her husband and son, Janey and Andy’s daughter, Janey’s nephew, and two young children were home at the time of the incident.

Family members allegedly told authorities they don’t know who did this or why.

“It’s like something out of the movies that you don’t expect,” neighbor Gail DeRousse told WUFT. “Up in here you kind of figure it’s a safe haven.”

“I can’t believe it. It’s not real. [There was] no trouble here, very quiet,” another neighbor, Sandy Stokes, told the Star-Banner. “They’re the nicest people.”

Janey took to Facebook following the murder of her son and husband, writing:

“I love you two with all my heart. I know you’re here with me. Please help me through this. My life…why would someone take them away from me?”

Set to graduate in a few months, friends of Bailey described him as hardworking. Lake Weir High School guidance counselor Patricia Karolev claimed the teen was preparing for college, recently registering to take the ACT and SAT.

“My baby…make sure you watch over me and your sister…I know you’re with dad…and I’m trying to be strong but I don’t think I can go on…no one will ever know this pain,” Janey wrote on a picture of her son.

The two suspects are still on the loose. Investigators with the Marion County Sheriff’s Office claimed they have received more than 100 tips relating to the home invasion.

[Feature Photo: Facebook]

Jacquelyn Gray is a New Jersey-based writer and journalist. When she's not covering crime, she's probably tweeting or doing yoga.