Police said a couple found dead in a Massachusetts mansion Wednesday died of gunshot wounds, but they are still are trying to understand how such a terrible thing could happen to a couple who were so well-liked.  

John "Jack" Magee and Geri Magee were found dead on the first floor of their home Wednesday morning by the couple's daughter, Holly Magee Senykoff. Magee Senykoff was at the home to drop off her kids so her parents could babysit.

The couple were both shot "execution style," according to a source

Police have said they are investigating the deaths as homicides, but would give no other details about the investigation.

"We will miss them dearly," the family wrote in a statement released Friday through the Essex County District Attorney's office.

The family's statement also thanked those who have expressed sympathy and offered prayers over the past several days, and requested privacy, to "allow them time to grieve and deal with this tragedy."

A friend of the family, Diana Mercandetti, said she had known the Magees for more than 40 years.

"They're a great couple. They still are. In my heart they still are, and a great family. Family people. They're close," she told myFOXboston.com.

Mercandetti said Magee Senykoff called her right after she made the discovery.

"She called me as soon as she got into the house. I think she called her husband and myself. Police of course, but she just walked in and they were there," said Mercandetti.

The Magees have a son, John, who lives in Somerville, Mass., according to the family.

The Magees have two companies listed at their home in Andover, Advance Realty and Magee Construction, which friends say their son John was set to take over from his dad.

"It was a business passed down from father to father, father to son, and now it was going to be going to the son," said Mercandetti, "It was just now time for retirement."

To add to the mystery, the Magees' Lexus SUV was found on fire Tuesday night in Boston's North End.

So far police have called the deaths an isolated act, and do not believe the public is at risk. They said the door to the home was unlocked, and there were no signs of a break-in.

Newscore contributed to this report.

To read more on this story, see the myFOXboston.com article here. 

Family friends of Andover murder victims speak: MyFoxBOSTON.com