NEW YORK — A New York Air National Guardsman at Fort Hamilton who became an American citizen during a 2012 White House ceremony has been slain along with her two toddlers. The children’s father, also an Air Guardsman, has been taken into custody.
Senior Airman Alla Ausheva, 3-year-old Elia Walker and 2-year-old Ivan Walker were found dead Saturday in their Staten Island home.
Police have charged the children’s father, Senior Airman Shane Walker, 36, with murder, manslaughter, arson and weapons possession. Walker was hospitalized after being found walking along a highway. He had not yet been arraigned on Monday, according to the Staten Island district attorney’s office.
The boys were possibly drowned in the bathroom tub and then carried into the room where their mother’s lifeless body was found with severe injuries to her head and face, sources told the New York Daily News.
Ausheva, 37, served as a logistics planner with the 109th Airlift Wing, based in Scotia, N.Y., and transferred her service from the Army National Guard to the Air National Guard in November 2014, according to Army Col. Richard Goldenberg, a spokesman for the New York Guard.
A 2012 naturalized citizen from St Petersburg, Russia, Ausheva originally joined the New York Army National Guard in July 2011. She had been serving full time on state active duty with the homeland security force at Fort Hamilton, Joint Task Force Empire Shield.
Walker, 36, is a traditional Air National Guard member of the 105th Airlift Wing serving as a vehicle operator in Newburgh, N.Y., Goldenberg stated in an email. Walker also had prior service in the Army National Guard from 2011 to 2014 as a vehicle operator. He joined the 105th Airlift Wing in September 2017.
Ausheva had obtained a protective order against Walker, but it was no longer in effect, The New York Times reported.
Ausheva moved from Russia, to Queens in 2011 and became a U.S. citizen on July 4, 2012.
“All of you did something profound: You chose to serve,” then President Barack Obama told Ausheva and 24 other immigrant service members during the naturalization ceremony. “You put on the uniform of a country that was not yet fully your own. You displayed the values that we celebrate every Fourth of July — duty, responsibility and patriotism.”
She also was passionate about music.
"She was a very determined young woman; she was charming and so enthusiastic," said Linda Amiel Burns, founder of a workshop called The Singing Experience.
A YouTube video shows Ausheva performing in Russian and English.
"One year ago I moved from Russia. That's when my first dream came true," Ausheva said onstage. "Then in the summer I joined the U.S. Army. That's when my second dream came true. Now, I'm singing on a real stage and not in the shower. My third dream came true. And now I wonder what's next."
A comment she made during a song introduction now bears added poignancy: "Sometimes life separates us from the person we love and all we have are our memories."
Said Goldenberg, “Senior Airmen Alla Ausheva served her State and Nation with distinction and will be missed by her fellow Airmen. No words can express our sadness on hearing this horrific news.”
A GoFundMe campaign has been set up for the Ausheva family in Russia. The funds will be used to transport the bodies of the airman and her children to Russia so that her family can lay them to rest.