JACKSON, MS (WLBT) - A metro-area family is still searching for answers 2 months after losing their loved one.
52-year-old Charles Ponthieux was shot and killed on Feb. 22 after being shot at a Jackson intersection, according to the Jackson Police Department. Officers responded to a crash involving a pickup truck and an ATV at the intersection of Hanging Moss Road and Forest Avenue. There they found an unresponsive Ponthieux lying in the roadway.
Investigators later learned that two men on the ATV got into an argument with Ponthieux after the wreck. One of the men fired shots at Ponthieux and ran from the scene.
Ponthieux died at the hospital.
He left behind his wife, three children, and two grandchildren.
His family described him as a kind, family-oriented man who was loved not only by them but others in the community as well.
“Almost 500 people came to the funeral home that night,” said Emilie McEachern, Charles’ daughter. “I just realized how many people my dad impacted. So many people would tell us ‘Your dad was our mentor’ and it’s just amazing to see how big he was in our lives. He was just as big in other people’s lives.”
Since his death, they’ve had a difficult time adjusting to what’s now their new normal.
“He always taught us what to do,” McEachern said. “We’ve all kind-of compared him to our moral compass since all this happened, so it’s really hard because he is the person that just kept everything afloat. He’s the person we’d talk to and it’s hard for us to figure out what we do when that person who had that role is gone.”
Charles and his wife, Becky, met when she was a senior in high school and had been married since they were 18 and 19-years-old.
The couple celebrated their 33rd anniversary just days before the tragic shooting.
“I felt bad at first because I was so sad. I couldn’t even comfort my own children,” said Becky. “They were having to be the comforters and comfort me. Our lives will never be the same again.”
Ponthieux worked as a manager at a Jackson pawn shop and Becky said she spoke to him for the last time shortly before the shooting when he was supposed to meet up with her and their granddaughter to cash-in coins at Coinstar.
“Our last conversation 15 minutes before it happened was, ‘I’ll meet y’all at Kroger. I love you bigger than the world. You know that, right?’" Becky said. “That’s the one thing he always told me one-hundred times a day. He would call me and say ‘I love you, you’re beautiful’ and you miss those things.”
“He was my very best friend. He was my soulmate, and my one true love,“ said Becky. “He will be greatly missed, always.”
McEachern recalled some of her favorite memories during his time there.
“I remember being little and we had an N64 (Nintendo 64 gaming console), and dad would bring home games,” McEachern said. “We would constantly trade them out and we were the coolest kids in the neighborhood because Chuck hooked all the kids up with N64 games. All our friends told us they will never forget the Halloween when dad passed out $2 bills.”
Now, the family reflects on the good times they had with him and hope his legacy will live on through the young men he mentored.
If you have any information on Charles Ponthieux’s death, contact Crime Stoppers at 601-355-8477.