Durham County

Man identifies 2 found dead in Chapel Hill home: ‘Police simply said it was violent’

Pictured is the 442 Deming Road home in Chapel Hill where two bodies — a mother and her son — were found Thursday.
Pictured is the 442 Deming Road home in Chapel Hill where two bodies — a mother and her son — were found Thursday. Google Street View

A woman and her son were found dead in their Chapel Hill home Thursday, a family member confirmed Friday.

Baylor Gibson III said Friday that a Realtor found his mother Margaret Montgomery Gibson, who he said was 86, and his brother Eric Dana Gibson, 58, in the home at 442 Deming Road.

Baylor Gibson, 66, of La Crescenta, California, said he had hoped that his mother would be able to visit him soon.

“We are all deeply shocked and saddened,” he said.

He and Eric were two of Margaret Gibson’s five children, he said. Eric Gibson graduated from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, his brother said. The family had once lived in Evanston, where the five children graduated from high school.

“He stayed with his parents all his life,” Baylor Gibson said of his brother, Eric. “Unfortunately, he had some psychiatric issues. And those were a problem for him.”

Baylor Gibson said he isn’t sure what happened.

“The police simply said it was violent,” Baylor Gibson said.

He doesn’t know if his brother was involved, he said.

“Nobody knows yet,” he said. “The police are investigating that.”

Baylor Gibson said he spoke with his mother earlier this week.

“She was quite healthy,” he said. “She would get up and go run and walk around the neighborhood for about half a mile or so every morning.”

County records show Margaret Gibson bought the Chapel Hill property in 2001. Margaret Gibson’s husband of 62 years, retired U.S. Marine Col. Baylor Gibson Jr., died in November 2012.

Baylor Gibson Jr., served in three wars – World War II, Korea and Vietnam – and flew fighter-bombers in the latter two, his son said. Gibson Jr. is buried in Arlington National Cemetery. Margaret Gibson will be buried there, too, her son said.

Margaret Gibson was involved with local historical societies, including the Daughters of the American Revolution, and sang in the choir at St. Thomas More Catholic Church in Chapel Hill, he said.

“She had a very good voice for singing,” Baylor Gibson said.

The couple married in a chapel at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point. They came to Chapel Hill, in part, because of the proximity to UNC Hospitals and Duke University Hospitals, as the elder Baylor Gibson was suffering from lymphoma and leukemia and needed specialized care, Baylor Gibson said.

Chapel Hill police did not have any additional information to share publicly Friday about the deaths. They are treating the incident as a death investigation, spokesman Ran Northam said, and the bodies have been sent to the Office of the State Medical Examiner.

“We do not believe there is any ongoing threat to the community,” Northam said.

The four-bedroom, two-bath home, located on the corner of East Franklin Street, had been on the market for more than a year, a neighbor said. Local real estate companies have it listed for $650,000.

Virginia Bridges: 919-829-8924, @virginiabridges

Tammy Grubb: 919-829-8926, @TammyGrubb