Toby Bowden, a 49-year-old retired Marine, father, and soon-to-be husband, tragically lost his life on Wednesday morning in Coweta County, Georgia.
Bowden, an employee of Parkers Towing in Newnan, was dispatched to a crash on I-85 northbound near the Highway 29 exit shortly before 7 a.m. However, he experienced a deadly incident while he was on the job.
As Bowden was assisting with the crash cleanup in the emergency lane, a driver approached the scene at a high speed. The driver, attempting to avoid the fire trucks blocking lanes for first responders, lost control of his vehicle, which began to spin before striking Bowden.
Bowden was pronounced dead at the scene. A Coweta County Sheriff’s deputy standing nearby was also injured, but is expected to recover.
Jeff Poqutte, the owner of Southside Wrecker, expressed his anger and sadness over the incident. Poqutte’s company and Parkers Towing are the only two businesses that provide heavy wrecker services in the county, operating on a rotational basis for emergency responses.
He lamented the loss of Bowden, whom he had known for about 20 years. He stated that Bowden had been an integral part of the community.
Newnan Police also mourned the loss, describing Bowden as a “kind soul” who was just trying to do his job.
The driver responsible for the accident has been identified as 31-year-old Christopher Thornton. He is facing several criminal charges as a result of the victim’s death.
Prior to the crash, Thornton already had an active warrant out for his arrest.