March 18, 2009
Police believe the drowning death of a Columbus man, found Tuesday in Luxapallila Creek Park, may be the result of a suicide.
At 9:19 a.m. police received a call from Robert C. McCollum. McCollum, who frequently exercises in the park, saw 65-year-old Tommy Coggins'' vehicle partially submerged in the water in front of the boat ramp. By the time Columbus police officers arrived, the silver 2007 Nissan VIS was completely submerged.
CPD officials called in the Columbus Fire Department''s Dive Team to get to the vehicle. Once under water, the crew discovered Coggins'' body.
Several factors lead police to consider Coggin''s death a suicide: A witness stated he saw the car driving toward the boat ramp and the car went into the water front first, instead of back first, as a car might if it were going to haul a boat out of the water, according to the witness. Also, Coggins reportedly stopped by Bosticks -- a nearby convince store -- to ask directions to Luxapillila Park, located off Nashville Ferry Road.
Lowndes County Coroner Greg Merchant is investigating the death; he has not confirmed it was the result of suicide.
"I need to do a few more interviews," said Merchant. "A toxicology report will be submitted, but we know there was no other person involved."
resident commented at 3/19/2009 1:38:00 PM:
This man and his family have lived in Columbus for over 20 years. I find it hard to believe he had to get directions to the Lux. perhaps he may have been in an altered state of mind.
redident commented at 3/19/2009 1:38:00 PM:
Also, my condolences to the family.
Mickey Crowe Elliott commented at 3/20/2009 5:13:00 PM:
I am so sorry to hear about Tommy's death. I worked with Tommy years ago at the Woolco Dept Store. He was a fine man. I too find it hard to believe that he would have to ask directions to a local park. My condolences to Tommy"s family.
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