Chilling last photo of mum and her sons before triple murder-suicide

The final photo of a mum and her two sons has emerged just hours before they were shot by her ex-husband.

Kjersten Schladetzky, 39, and her two children Nelson, 8, and William, 11, were shot dead at their home, in the US state of Minneapolis, on Sunday, StarTribune reports.

The man accused of killing them is Ms Schladetzky’s ex-husband David, 53, who then took his own life.

Kjersten Schladetzky, 39, and her two sons Nelson, 8, and William, 11, are pictured hours before they were killed. Also pictured is Inez Elliott (in chair). Source: Facebook/ Kjersten Schladetzky

David, armed with a gun, travelled to the home to pick up the boys before reportedly firing his weapon at William and Nelson as they ran away through their snow-covered yard.

He then went inside and shot their mother to death.

Ms Schladetzky and David divorced in June. Authorities said the father showed no history of violence and had no criminal record.

Just hours earlier on Saturday, Ms Schladetzky shared a photo of herself on Facebook with William and Nelson in tow. Pictured also was Inez Elliott.

It’s not clear how Ms Elliott knows the family.

“Great picture! Hugs for all,” one woman wrote.

Officers prepare to storm the home after the shooting. Source: ABC5

‘Laying out in the snow’

Ms Schladetzky and David had agreed to joint custody of the boys on June 20, CBS WCCO4 reported.

Erik Wiltscheck, who lived next door, told the station he witnessed the shooting.

Mr Wiltscheck said he told police, “the dad’s shooting his kids”.

Ms Schladetzky with her boys and their father David. Source: Facebook/ Kjersten Schladetzky

“I will relive this over and over and over again,” he said.

The resident told ABC5 he first “thought it was a game”.

"They kept trying to escape, they were getting hit by bullets.  It was like a movie. It was surreal," Mr Wiltscheck told the station.

Eric Stiver, another neighbour, said he saw the ordeal from his bedroom window.

“That was the hardest, seeing that, them laying out in the snow,” Mr Stiver told CBS WCCO4.

Anna Pratt, a friend of the mum’s, told The Associated Press that Ms Schladetzky had previously worked as a box office manager at Hennepin Theatre Trust.

A witness said he saw the man chase his boys through the front yard. Source: ABC5

Ms Pratt said that’s where she met her ex-husband. He was working in concessions.

“She was just so brilliant and she could take on anything. She was so bright and handled things with such finesse,” Ms Pratt said.

“She just really loved those two boys and was so pleased have them in her life. The three shared such a great dynamic.”

According to CBS WCCO4, Ms Schladetzky was giving her husband spousal support of more than $1216 a month.

If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, find help by visiting Lifeline or calling 1800 RESPECT.

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