A man and woman were pronounced dead today in what investigators suspect was a murder-suicide in South Suburban Oak Lawn home this morning, police said.

Police were called to the home on the 9400 block of South Tulley Avenue at about 8:30 a.m. after family members asked for a well being check on the couple who lived there, said Oak Lawn Police Chief Bill Villanova.

Inside the home police found Mary Mauger, 47, dead of an apparent gunshot wound to her neck in what appears to be a homicide, according to police and the Cook County medical examiner's office.

Along with Mauger, police also found the body of Kenneth Borkowski, 53, dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound to the chin, officials said.

Police suspect the man killed the woman before shooting himself but autopsies are scheduled for Tuesday, officials said.

The couple had been in a long-time relationship and according to public records purchased the home in 2005.  Family members indicated that the two may have recently gotten married but police did not have any proof of the marriage, said Villanova.

While the couple did not have any children Borkowski had children from a previous marriage, Villanova said.

No one else was at the home when the shootings took place, Villanova said.Neighbors told police that they had seen Borkowski outside of the home and the woman inside the home this morning before they were found, Villanova said. Neighbors did not hear the gunshots in the quiet residential area, police said.

There was no evidence that they had a fight leading to the shootings. Police did not find a note, Villanova said.

The man worked as an electrician and Mauger worked in a law firm in Burr Ridge, officials said.

Kenneth Borkowski grew up in Oak Lawn, the youngest of eight children.

Relatives described him as a hardworking family man who was so devoted to his two grandsons, he named his electrical business “Roleo,” which is a combination of both their names.

Borkowski also is survived by an adult daughter and son. Their aunt said his children are “numb” from the shock of losing their father but also at the violence that police said unfolded.

“It had to be a psychotic episode of some sort,” said Monica Brandt, whose older sister was Borkowski’s first wife. “It doesn’t remotely fit his character.”

Brandt said Borkowski had been struggling with epilepsy in recent years and he was scheduled for surgery. She said Borkowski blacked out while behind the wheel during a recent epileptic seizure and, after getting into an accident, awoke uncharacteristically combative and unaware of his surroundings.

He did not have a history of violence, court records showed.

“We believe this had to be a reaction to his medication because he was not a violent man,” Brandt said. “Ken was very smart and funny. He had a quick wit and an easy smile.”

She said Borkowski, an avid Harley Davidson rider, spearheaded the Chicago chapter of Toys for Tots in 1978 and remained active in the annual toy drive to help needy families.


csadovi@tribune.com

cgutowski@tribune.com