A manhunt is underway after a brutal attack left a husband dead and his wife in hospital with 19 stab wounds, according to reports.

Travis and Jamilyn Juetten were asleep in their home in rural Marion County, Oregon on August 13 when a masked intruder broke in and began to attack them.

The vicious assault at 3am resulted in Travis, 26, dying from multiple stab wounds while Jamilyn, 24, was left seriously injured after she was knifed 19 times, reports People.

Friends and family said that they believe Travis died protecting his wife from the ferocious onslaught.

The couple's friend Alain Leon told KOIN-TV: "He saved her life. He protected her from the attacker."

The married pair were meant to fly to Hawaii the following day and had invited the house-sitter to stay the night.

The house-sitter was asleep in the next room when the attack took place and phoned the police when they heard the noise.

It has been reported that the house-sitter may have startled the knife-wielder who then fled the scene.

So far the police have not identified any suspects or given a reason for the violent attack.

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Travis' family paid tribute to their "son, nephew, brother, and friend" describing him as a "kind, gentle, and loving person" whose life was "brutally cut short".

The family confirmed that Jamilyn was seriously injured and is still recovering in the hospital.

"Travis was a kind, gentle, and loving person who did not deserve to lose his life, and for reasons unknown to any of us," the tribute read.

"While we grieve Travis's loss and wish for Jamilyn's health, we continue to be concerned for the safety of our family, friends, and neighbours."

The family asked that if anyone had any information that could help to contact Marion County Sheriff's Office.

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