This story has been updated.
A 65-year-old businessman and hotel developer and his 67-year-old wife were found dead Sunday afternoon at their home in Montgomery County near Rockville, according to police.
Police identified the couple as Richard Louis Vilardo and Julianne Humphreys Vilardo, who lived in the 13200 block of Ridge Drive, a narrow street where widely spaced houses sit amid trees and grass.
Capt. Paul Starks, a police department spokesman, said that both members of the couple appear to have suffered trauma to their upper bodies. But, he said, a specific cause of death would be determined by autopsy.
The spokesman said Richard Vilardo’s body was found outdoors, just behind the house, and his wife’s body was found inside.
Starks said investigators are trying to determine whether anything from the home is missing, but he cautioned that police do not yet know of a possible motive.
The police spokesman said that the couple was to have met relatives but did not show up as scheduled. He said one relative went to the house about 12:20 p.m., found the bodies and called police.
“We are heartbroken over this senseless tragedy,” relatives said in a statement released through a spokesman.
“Dick and Jody Vilardo were a warm and loving couple,” the statement said. It added that family members “know of no one who would wish them harm.”
Photographs of the home appear to show a one story structure with a deep lawn separating it from the road. It has an attached garage, a pitched roof, a chimney and shutters. Numerous trees grow behind the house and flank both sides. It is south of the Lakewood Country Club and about one mile west of Interstate 270.
Vilardo was a co-founder of Pinnacle Hotel Management, a Florida based concern that was set up in 1997 to develop and manage Marriott- and Hilton-branded hotels, according to the Pinnacle Web site.
“I am heartbroken,” said Steven J. Fairbanks, one of Pinnacle’s principals, along with Vilardo and Ron Franklin. Vilardo, holder of an MBA degree, is also listed as chief financial officer.
“Dick Vilardo was one of the greatest gentlemen I ever met,” Fairbanks said by e-mail.
In addition, he said, “ Dick and Jodi were the perfect couple. They will be sorely missed.”
According to Pinnacle’s Web site, Vilardo spent more than 35 years in the hospitality industry, specializing in project analysis, finance and development.
It said he had been “an owner/franchisee of Marriott limited service hotels since 1990.”
It also said he had been a Marriott executive, and was at one time vice president of development for the northeast region.
According to the Web site, he had also been a principal with an investment banking firm based in the Washington area, which developed projects that included the Bethesda Residence Inn.
The family in its statement asked that the media respect their privacy at a difficult time.