news

After her children were shot dead by their father, Olga Edwards reached out to Rosie Batty.

Warning: This post deals with domestic violence and suicide and could be triggering for some readers.

Rosie Batty “deeply understands” the pain Olga Edwards felt.

Edwards, 37, was found dead on Wednesday, less than six months after her children Jack, 15, and Jennifer, 13, were shot dead by their estranged father in their home.

murder-west-pennant-hills-Olga-Edwards
Jennifer and Jack Edwards. Image: Supplied.

She was discovered by police about 10am on Wednesday after they responded to a concern for welfare report at the same house her children were murdered earlier in the year.

NSW Police say the death is not being treated as suspicious.

Following her children's deaths, Edwards connected with family violence survivor and campaigner Rosie Batty.

Batty was someone who - tragically - could understand the pain Edwards was going through, because her 11-year-old son Luke was murdered by his father, Batty's ex-husband, in 2014.

Speaking to the Sydney Morning Herald, Batty said it went beyond physical pain and "takes your future away from you".

Rosie Batty. Image: Supplied.
ADVERTISEMENT

She said Edwards asked her how she found meaning in her life following Luke's death and was struggling with the finality of it all.

Edwards had not returned to work following Jack and Jennifer's deaths and was also dealing with another consequence of her ex-husband's horrific actions: financial pressure and wondering how she would pay her bills.

A neighbour told the Daily Telegraph Edwards often remained inside the house with the blinds down all day. She would sometimes not open the door when neighbours brought her food.

The neighbour also told the heartbreaking story of how Edwards would fall asleep on Jack or Jennifer's bed at night: "She couldn't get over never seeing them again."

Batty told the Sydney Morning Herald Edwards lost all hope and trust in the authorities meant to protect her children - including police and the family court - and that she had every reason to.

"I really want people to understand [this tragedy] was exacerbated through the family law court system... that's exactly what it was, another example of the system failing," Batty said.

She felt Edwards had a sense of hopelessness: "I felt that it would not surprise me if she made that decision... I don't blame her and I understand. I deeply understand."

Batty called for reform of the family law court, which she said fails to understand the risks to children and does not take their own feelings into account.

She supports calls for a royal commission into the family law court despite the fact that it would reveal "hideous" abuse situations.

Edwards death follows the murders of her children Jack and Jennifer Edwards at the hands of their father John Edwards.

John shot the siblings in their Pennant Hills home and they were later discovered by Olga Edwards when she returned home from work.

John Edwards was found dead in his Normanhurst home 12 hours later.

If you, or someone you know, is being subjected to domestic violence, call 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732), or Relationships Australia, (1300 364 277).

Anyone across Australia experiencing a personal crisis or thinking about suicide can call Lifeline (13 11 14). 

00:00 / ???