MOUNT AIRY, N.C. (WGHP) — People who watched four-year-old Skyler Wilson play outside his home every day tell FOX8 they had no idea what was happening inside the house on Rosecrest Drive in Mount Airy.

Surry County deputies believe the boy’s adoptive parents Joseph and Jodi Wilson abused him, and it led to his death.

“He was just happy to be outside, chasing his sisters and pestering them. You would hear him squeal, and they’d squeal, and he was just happy,” a neighbor said.

The silence and absence of those happy yells leaves an emptiness in the neighborhood.

“It broke my heart knowing it was that close and that kind of shape he was in. I can’t understand why somebody would hurt a child,” a neighbor said.

She didn’t want to show her face or share her name but couldn’t stop crying as she talked about Skyler, wondering if she and other neighbors missed signs of abuse.

“They were just so pale, so white, so tiny. I always wondered, but you don’t know,” said the neighbor about Skyler and the Wilson’s other adopted and biological children.

One thing that sticks with her is not seeing Skyler outside as often before she learned of his death.

FOX8 stopped by Joseph Wilson’s business, Affordable Wellness, and found a closed sign on the door.

Neighboring business owners tell FOX8 the office closed before deputies arrested Joseph and his wife. They didn’t know he had adopted kids until word spread around town about the charges.

“The tourists started hearing about it,” Angela Shur said.

She lives in Mount Airy and owns Miss Angel’s Heavenly Pies downtown. She didn’t know the Wilsons personally.

She works with different groups in Surry County with a focus on helping less fortunate children and tells FOX8 the news weighs heavy on her and anyone in the community.

“It could be your neighbor, your friend. You don’t know what’s going on in individual houses,” Shur said.

Joseph and Jodi are being held in the Surry County Jail with no bond. They are scheduled to make their first appearance in court Tuesday morning.