BOONTON — The mother who was found dead with one of her young sons in a park pond on Tuesday night had faced a series of tragedies in the days before, reports say.

The bodies of Warda Syed, 35, and 11-year-old Uzair Ahmed were discovered in the water in the Upper Pond section of Grace Lord Park after people encountered Syed's surviving 6-year-old son alone in a parked car nearby.

Acting Morris County Prosecutor Robert Carroll has not revealed the circumstances or cause of their deaths.

Flowers, teddy bears and messages of condolence were left at the park on Tuesday.

A doctor whose cousin rented an apartment to Syed’s family told NBC 4 New York that Syed's husband was being treated for Stage 4 cancer. In addition, her brother died from coronavirus two weeks ago and her sister, a doctor, died three days ago in Pakistan.

Syed was a substitute teacher and an after-school worker while her son Uzair was a fourth grader at the John Hill School in Boonton, according to a message from Superintendent Robert Presuto.

“We are stunned and heartbroken by this incident as we mourn the loss of our colleague and for many of our students their classmate and friend,"  Presuto said in a message to parents and students. Support services were available for any student or staff member in need.

Response to a drowning at Upper Pond inside Grace Lord Park in Boonton (Eriana Torrealba)
Response to a drowning at Upper Pond inside Grace Lord Park in Boonton (Eriana Torrealba)

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNJ

Marijuana legal in NJ: How do the laws work?

Answers to common questions about legalized recreational marijuana in New Jersey and rules about underage use of weed.

More From New Jersey 101.5 FM