Who was Amanda Calo? Chicago teacher shot by Illinois trooper husband in murder-suicide
In a tragic case of a murder-suicide, an off-duty Illinois state trooper shot his wife and then himself in a car in Chicago. Around 1:30 pm on January 25, a witness found the bodies of 30-year-old Antonio Alvarez and his 31-year-old spouse, Amanda Calo in a parked car just a few blocks from the Indiana state line. Reports confirm the two have passed away, orphaning their two children who are one and four.
On January 6, Clayton Osteen and Victoria Pacheco of the St. Lucie County Sheriff's Office died by suicide within days of each other. Several officers also took their lives in 2021, including four members of the Capitol Police who responded to the January 6 insurrection. Tragically, suicide was rated as one of the top reasons police officers lost their lives in 2021, with 49% of all cop deaths that year being attributed to suicide.
Little has been done to change the equation, making even more traffic in cases like that of Alvarez and Calo who leave behind young children. Sen. Tammy Duckworth of Illinois introduced legislation in Congress that would help families of officers who die by suicide, but sadly it may be too little and too late for those like Alvarez, Osteen, and Pacheco,
Who was Amanda Calo?
Reports say the state trooper shot his wife in the head and then took his own life in a private car parked in the 11000 block of South Avenue E. Illinois State Police later confirmed the identities of the two as Alvarez and Calo. Beyond confirming his identity and noting he served with the Illinois State Police for 3 years, police refused to offer more information about Alvarez.
The Chicago Teachers Union noted Calo was a Pre-K teacher at Matthew Gallistel Language Academy. It's unclear when she married Alvarez and if the two children are his. Shortly after their passing, friends and family set up a GoFundMe for the two children - one-year-old Myla and four-year-old Eli. "If you knew Amanda, you knew she was an absolute joy to be around. Her smile was infectious and her unmistakable laugh radiated in every room she walked into," the page said. It added, " Every dollar raised will directly support Myla and Eli’s education, health, and welfare. We hope this fund becomes a lasting tribute to a loving mother, daughter, sister, and friend." Calo was active in her community and worked in after-school programs, community gardens and the violence prevention group Safe Kids Chicago, godmother, Ald. Susan Sadlowski-Garza (10th), told Fox 32. "She helped mentor kids on the wrong path," she said. "Everyone loved Amanda."
At the time of reporting, the fundraiser has managed to raise over $85,000 of its $100,000 goal. The Chicago Police Department has opened an investigation into their deaths, which appears to have stemmed from marital issues. ABC 7 reported that Calo told her family she intended to leave her husband because of unspecified problems in their marriage. Beyond that, no information is available at this time. Calo was in the middle of divorcing her husband when her longtime friend Kate Garza asked her to move to the North Side, closer to her.