Grandparents grieving deaths of Powell boys, one year later

Grandparents grieving deaths of Powell boys, one year later »Play Video
GRAHAM, Wash. -- Exactly one year ago, the sons of missing Puyallup native Susan Cox Powell died when their father blew up their house.

The boys' grandparents say Charlie and Braden Powell may be gone, but they will never be forgotten. Chuck and Judy Cox visited their grandsons at Woodbine Cemetery on Tuesday.

"I wanted to bring some flowers for Charlie and Braden. Some fresh flowers," said Chuck Cox.

"It's been a year, but I don't feel I've been able to grieve the way I want to," said Judy cox.

The boys are pictured with their mother, who is still missing. Since she disappeared three years ago, her husband had been the focus of her disappearance.

But on a supervised visit one year ago in what was a well-planned murder-suicide, Josh Powell rushed the boys into the house and locked the caseworker outside.

"I couldn't stop him and either could anyone else have stopped him," said case worker Elizabeth Griffin-Hall.

The house exploded in flames. Josh Powell and his two sons were killed.

"It's just hard," said Chuck Cox. "It's a hard time."

Leading up to this day, the Coxes stayed busy at the state Legislature, supporting a bill that would make it tougher for a person suspected of murder to get custody of children.

"Luckily this week, I've had the distraction of Olympia in trying to get something to prevent it from happening again," Chuck Cox said.

Members of the community were paying their respects as well. The tragedy has hit everyone hard.

"Just know that the community supports them 100 percent," said Krisal Guilliot of Tacoma.

Judy Cox says the tragedy is a lesson in loving our kids.

"Just hug them and love them, because you don't know if something could happen," she said.

The Coxes find a bit of peace in the shadow of the Christmas Box Angels that looks out over their grandsons.

The public was invited to attend a vigil scheduled to be held in Graham Tuesday evening. Supporters planned to gather at 82nd Avenue East and 189th Court East at 6 p.m. The Coxes planned to attend.