Police find couple and son shot dead at Texas home

By Calvin Palmer

Police called to a Texas home last night, following reports of shots being fired, found a couple and son shot dead.

Sgt. John Jordan with the League City Police Department said the bodies of Lewis Cantrell III, his father, Lewis Cantrell II, and stepmother, Gayle Cantrell, were found of the living room floor of their home on Chinaberry Park Lane.

A .38-caliber pistol was found next to the body of the younger Cantrell and police are investigating the incident as a double murder and suicide.

Two other people in the house, an 18-year-old male and elder female believed to be a son and stepdaughter, heard the gunfire and ran to a neighbor’s house and called 911.

According to Police Chief Michael Jez, the caller said someone had shot others inside the home. The shooter went outside, then returned to the home and fired again.

League City police and a SWAT team arrived at 7:50 p.m. and sealed off six blocks of a newer subdivision in the Brittany Lakes area.

Tear gas was fired and police moved into the house discovering the dead bodies.

The younger Cantrell did not live at the house, Jordan said. His brother and sister told police he and his parents had been discussing money earlier in the day.

A neighbor four houses down said she was getting her mail when she heard the shots.

She said she counted 10 to 12 shots from a small caliber gun, possibly a 9 mm pistol. She said the next thing she heard were the screams from a teenage girl and younger boy who ran from the house.

League City is situated halfway between Houston and Galveston.

[Based on reports by the Houston Chronicle and The Galveston County Daily News.]

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9 Comments

Filed under Crime, News

9 responses to “Police find couple and son shot dead at Texas home

  1. carla foster

    THIS IS SO SAD IM SO UPSET THAT WAS MY UNCLE AND MY COUSIN & AUNT GAYLE!! THEY WILL BE MISSED DEARLY! MAY GOD BE WITH U R.IP.

    • Dennis

      THIS IS A HEARTBRAKING, MINDBOGGLING,
      TRAGEDY. LEWIS CANTRELL JR & LEWIS III WERE BEST FRIENDS AND LOVED EACH OTHER AS FATHER AND SON, DEARLY. FOR NINE YEARS LEWIS III SUFFERED FROM PTSD. POST TRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER, SCHIZOEFFECTIVE DISORDER, CLINICAL DEPRESSION, SOCIAL ANXIETY, AND MORE. WHEN HE WAS IN THE MILITARY WHEN HE WAS BARELY 18 YEARS OLD… (SS CONNECTICUT TRIDENT NUCLEAR SUBMARINE 4 YEARS, NUCLEAR MISSILE TECHNICIAN IN GROTON CT, CERTIFIED LATHE MACHINIST & BUILDER WITH HIS DAD). AT TIME OF DECEASE HE WAS EMPLOYED AT UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS MEDICAL BRANCH HOSPITAL IN GALVESTON TEXAS, THROUGH A SUBCONTRACTOR (TRYING TO PUT BACK TOGETHER THE HOSPITAL HURRICANE IKE DEMOLISHED). (HE AND HIS DAD HAD LOST EVERYTHING IN HURRICANE IKE BECAUSE HE WAS AT UTMB TRYING TO SAVE THE HOSPITAL FROM HURR IKE, AND WAS NOT ABLE TO SAVE HIS OWN POSSESSIONS, INCLUDING A COMMEMORATIVE MEDAL AND US FLAG WHICH HAD BEEN GIVEN TO HIM BY HIS AUNT STELLA CANTRELL FRALEY, ORIGINALLY BELONGING TO HIS GRANDFATHER, LEWIS EDWARD CANTRELL, SENIOR BORN IN SABINE PASS TEXAS WHO WORKED WITH THE MILITARY FOR MORE THAN FORTY YEARS). LEWIS III WAS ON KLONIPIN, WHICH HELPED HIM A LOT. AFTER LEAVING THE MILITARY WITH HONORABLE DISCHARGE, HE DID NOT KEEP UP WITH HIS MEDICATIONS AND COUNSELLING. THIS TRAGEDY IS A WAKEUP CALL TO THOSE WHO KNOW THEY SHOULD BE TAKING THEIR PSYCHOLOGICAL MEDICATIONS.(PLEASE SUPPORT N.A.M.I OF THE GULFCOAST). WHILE IN THE MILITARY IN GROTON, CT LEWIS III WAS SEVERELY INJURED IN A CONFRONTATION IN WHICH HE WAS DEFENDING A YOUNG WOMAN FROM HER VIOLENT BOYFRIEND ON MILITARY PROPERTY. STATED WITHIN HIS N.C.I.S. NAVAL CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION SERVICE REPORT IT IS STATED “THIS YOUNG MAN WAS THE TYPE OF MAN WHO BELIEVED IN PROTECTING A FEMALE FROM HARM (approx)”.
      LEWIS III WAS A SIX FEET TALL, BLUE EYED,
      DARK BLOND, SHY, HANDSOME YOUNG MAN, HE HAD NERVOUS MANNERISMS FOR YEARS WHICH SHOWED HIS NERVOUS DISORDERS.
      HIS FATHER HAD GIVEN HIM THE GUN USED IN THIS TRAGEDY LESS THAN A WEEK BEFORE THE TRAGEDY, AS HAS BEEN SAID … AND ALSO IT HAS BEEN STATED THAT THE GUN ORIGINALLY BELONGED TO HIS PATERNAL GRANDMOTHER, EDITH VIRGINIA WILSON CANTRELL, WHO WAS ORIGINALLY FROM THE SUBURBS OF NEW ORLEANS (MERAUX). LEWIS III WAS ALSO AT THIS TIME IN THE PROCESS OF APPLYING TO THE ART INSTITUTE OF HOUSTON TEXAS. HIS GRANDFATHER, AND FATHER WERE BOTH EXCELLENT ARTISTS.
      THERE ARE OTHER FACTORS BEING INVESTIGATED WHICH MAY HAVE BEEN A CONTRIBUTING FORCE TO THE OCCURRENCE OF THIS HEARTBREAKING TRAGEDY, SUCH AS TOXICOLOGY REPORTS WILL SHOW IF HE HAD BEEN TAKING DIET SUPPLEMENTS, ETC. LEWIS III WAS AN AVID SURFER, ENJOYED ROCKCLIMBING, KAYAKING, ART, MUSIC, TRAVELLING, HIKING, SWIMMING, AND OTHER SPORTS.
      HE ASSISTED THE MOODY GARDENS GALVESTON HOPE THERAPY DEPT. DURING A SUMMER HELPING DISABLED CHILDREN RIDE HORSEBACK. HE ASSISTED HIS FATHER SEVERAL YEARS AT TULANE UNIVERSITY OF NEW ORLEANS WITH THE “SPECIAL OLYMPICS” HELD AT TULANE FOR DISABLED PARTICIPANTS. HE WAS IN THE MOVIE “UNDERCOVER BLUES” WITH KATHLEEN TURNER AND DENNIS QUAID, IN THE DEBUTANTE COTILLION “BUFFET” SCENE WHEN HE WAS ONLY ELEVEN YEARS OLD, AND WITH HIS PAY HE BOUGHT HIS OWN BASKETBALL GOAL. AT THE TIME OF THIS TRAGEDY HE WAS ONLY 26 YEARS OLD, ONE MONTH SHORT OF HIS 27TH BIRTHDAY.
      HE HAD TRAVELLED OVER THE WORLD ON THE SUBMARINES AND PARTICULARLY LIKED SCOTLAND AND NORWAY.
      PLEASE CONTACT YOUR LOCAL CRISIS LINE IF YOU OR YOUR LOVED ONE IS IN NEED OF PSYCHOLOGICAL COUNSELLING, AND SUPPORT THE MENTAL ILLNESS AGENCIES IN YOUR COMMUNITY.
      Signed, Charles Dennis Reynolds

    • Dennis

      Bless Your Heart in Heaven, Gayle Cantrell, the
      beloved second Wife of Lewis Edward Cantrell Junior. May you Rest in Eternal Peace.
      from Charles Dennis Reynolds

  2. Cathy

    I miss my friend Gayle. My heart is still broken. I hope Gayle’s and Lewis’ children and grandchildren find peace in this new year. Please know how special your parents were to a lot of us.

  3. Christie Cantrell P'cola

    ATTENTION ALL:
    Galveston Area Marathon Runners:
    The 2010 Lewis and Gayle Cantrell 5k Fun Run, dedicated on Jan. 2, 2010 by the “Friends of Galveston Island State Park” was heard to have been a GREAT success !! What a special way to remember the contributions they made to the Galveston Area Sports Community. Email address of the Galveston Daily News reporter who covered this item is Bernice92@aol.com. “Friends of Galveston Island State Park” web address: http://www.fogisp.org. Lewis and his daughter, Terra Cantrell Dick/digital graphics illustrator, ran the approximately 26 tough miles of the 2005 Austin Marathon, side by side. It was their first marathon. Many of us look forward to the “2011 Lewis and Gayle Cantrell 5k Friends of Galveston Island State Park FUN RUN” !! *** cite***

    ***cite*** any errors are unintentional.

  4. C C

    How does one go about archiving this article for the benefit of the youngsters ?

    • calvininjax

      I don’t know.

      • Christie

        Hello calvininjax,
        I think you are Calvin Palmer, and I believe I read somewhere you were born in Groton, Connecticut which is where Lewis III served on Navy Subs and was honorably discharged with PTSD/ chronic depression. If you can find any info on how to archive this article, I would appreciate it … there are very young relatives and friends who don’t need the heartache of this sad episode.

  5. please archive

    Dear Lord,
    I earnestly ask your strength and all powerful Love bring closure to this computer perpetuated pain to this family. Please enlighten the computer
    ” powers that be ” on accomplishing ARCHIVE of this piece of anguish/ “news” …
    FYI:
    Sun Stroke: [ as in ] lost in the desert and going mad … Dehydration, confusion, seeing false images as in “mirages” …

    Occupation of “shooter” at time of tragedy ~~>
    Sub-contractor spraying Fire Retardant in ATTICS at hospital in above 100/ degree heat. Confused, undernourished, exasperated. Not an excuse for tragedy … merely surrounding issues.

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