A North Carolina man’s troubles apparently drove him to kill his 61-year-old mother at her Dorchester County home before taking his own life in a restaurant parking lot, authorities said Friday.

Lynda Pages’ younger son found her shot to death Thursday night when he arrived at her Brandywine Drive home to spend the Christmas holiday with his mother, Dorchester County sheriff’s deputies said.

Detectives were investigating the death when the body of her other son, 31-year-old Bertrand Pages, was discovered in his vehicle at a Chili’s restaurant on Dorchester Road in North Charleston.

He apparently died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to Dorchester County Coroner Chris Nisbet.

The deaths appear to be the result of a murder-suicide, but it is unclear what prompted the violence, Nisbet said. The episode remains under investigation by the sheriff’s office.

Deputies got involved after Pages’ other son, Jonathan, found his mother dead inside her home at 151 Brandywine Drive at about 8:20 p.m. Thursday. She was slumped over on a living room couch with a pool of blood at her feet. A single shell casing lay nearby, according to an incident report.

Further investigation showed that she had been shot once in the eye, Nisbet said.

Jonathan Pages, of Florida, told deputies had last spoken to his mother by phone at 9 p.m. Wednesday. She told him that his brother Bert already had arrived for the holiday, a report stated.

A neighbor told deputies he saw a dark sport utility vehicle parked in the driveway of Pages’ home Wednesday evening. He and another neighbor reported hearing a loud boom at about 10 that night, but they did not see anything out of the ordinary.

Jonathan Pages told deputies his brother might have killed their mother due to unspecified problems he was having, Nisbet said.

At about 9 a.m. Friday, workers at Chili’s called North Charleston police after noticing a parked vehicle in the lot that had not moved since the previous day, police spokesman Spencer Pryor said. They saw a man in the vehicle who appeared to be sleeping, he said.

Officers noticed that the vehicle matched the description given in an alert put out by the sheriff’s office. Inside, they found Bertrand Pages dead, Pryor said.

The restaurant is about a mile away from Lynda Pages’ home, authorities said.

Nisbet said his heart goes out to the family, given the proximity to the holidays and the similarities between the incident and the beginning of the recent massacre in Newtown, Conn.

Reach Glenn Smith at 937-5556 or Twitter.com/glennsmith5.