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Friends say husband in Chesterfield murder-suicide was overwhelmed by wife’s terminal cancer

Posted at 11:20 PM, May 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-19 23:24:50-04

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- A Chesterfield couple died Wednesday in what police call a murder-suicide after a retired 73-year-old doctor killed his 68-year-old wife and then turned the gun on himself.

A Chesterfield Police spokesperson cited evidence at the scene in their assessment.

Several friends of the couple said Doctor Dennis Rudzinski was a wonderful man who was overwhelmed by his wife, Marilyn Rudzinski‘s terminal cancer.

The couple lived in the Bexley neighborhood in Midlothian off of Hull Street.

Friends of the couple said they were receiving hospice care after Marilyn's cancer spread to her spine and paralyzed her from the waist down.

Hospice nurse Julie Warren, who is the Director of Clinical Services at Crater Community Hospice, has no connection to the couple, but said caregivers face enormous stress in situations like this one.

"I think one of the hardest jobs on the planet is being a caregiver. It's exhausting. It's 24/7, and you're dealing with somebody that you're absolutely in love with," Warren said.

Friends of the couple said they were extremely close and Marilyn's cancer took a sudden turn for the worse in March.

They said it was evident Dr. Rudzinski was having a hard time dealing with watching his wife in pain.

The couple's friends called the situation "tragic."