RVC professor, 2 sons ID’d in weekend murder-suicide

A Rock Valley College professor and his two sons have been identified as the individuals found dead of gunshot wounds Saturday in their home southeast of Rockford.

Winnebago County Coroner Bill Hintz confirmed that they are P.S. Ruckman, 58, and his two sons, John Ruckman, 12, and Christopher Ruckman, 14.

They were found dead of gunshot wounds in their home in the 4600 block of Chandan Woods Drive, near the intersection of South Perryville and Linden roads in an unincorporated area of Winnebago County.

Winnebago County Sheriff’s deputies made a welfare check at the home at the request of the boys’ mother Saturday morning.

According to the Rockford Register Star, the boys attended Rockford Christian schools and were talented musicians.

Rock Valley College officials issued a statement that Dr. Ruckman had been a professor of political science there since 1998.

“The Rock Valley College community is devastated by the news of the tragic deaths of Peter Ruckman, and his two children,” stated Dr. Doug Jensen, President of Rock Valley College. “Our deepest sympathies go out to the family, friends, and colleagues of Professor Ruckman and his children at this difficult time.”

The College will be providing grief counseling services to its employees and students.

Ruckman had previously taught courses at Northern Illinois University. NIU officials say he most recently worked for the university as an adjunct professor in spring 2017, when he taught an online course about the American Presidency.

He also had been interviewed on several occasions on Northern Public Radio as well as broadcast and newspaper outlets across the country related to his work on presidential pardons.

–WNIJ News

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