Smith Mills, KY. (WEHT)– A small rural community is shaken tonight after police say a double-murder suicide claimed the lives of three people. Authorities were on the scene in Smith Mills for hours last night, and now those who lived nearby are sharing what they saw.

“Smith Mills is a quiet neighborhood, and you know, it is a town where most of us know each other, and we can keep in contact. Nothing like this has ever happened, that I know of,” says Christian Thurby, who lives down the street.

Thurby and his family woke up to phone calls last night from neighbors, asking if they were okay.

“Just trying to keep in touch with each other. But as soon as I was able to gather my thoughts, I was scared, scared for my family, and scared for the friends in the neighborhood,” he says.

Police responded to a home in the 6200 block of KY 136 last night and found a woman and man with gunshot wounds near the driveway.

“It was certainly a sobering call,” Kentucky State Trooper Corey King says.

Police say the woman died at the scene. Police say the man was still conscious when they arrived and told them the shooter was in the house with four kids.

“They become the priority. Their lives are at the highest level because they are the most helpless. So, at that point, everything becomes about them,” Henderson County Sheriff David Crafton says.

The children were rescued in less than an hour. Once the kids were out, police say they located a third man, who appeared to have died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. The second man was transported to the hospital and died. Their identities have not been released.