Coroner seeks help locating family of man killed in collision


Spalding County Coroner Sonny Foster is seeking the public’s assistance in locating relatives or friends of a homeless man who died after being struck by a vehicle.

The collision occurred in the early morning hours of March 24, when 70-year-old Thomas Earl Cummings reportedly entered the roadway in the area of North Expressway and Ellis Road.

Critically injured, Cummings was transported to the Trauma Unit of Grady Memorial Hospital. Cummings sustained multiple fractures and eventually succumbed to his injuries Wednesday, April 10.

“He never regained consciousness. He stayed in a coma the entire time,” Foster said.

“According to the hospital, he never had any visitors and has no identified next of kin,” Foster explained. “So, he’s basically homeless and unclaimed. We brought him back to Griffin and right now, he’s over at Haisten-McCullough Funeral Home.”

Having been unable to identify any relatives, Foster is asking for the community’s help.

“If anyone knows him, knows of any next of kin or anybody who might be concerned or anything whatsoever, they can certainly call me or they can call you at the newspaper,” he said. “It’s just a tragic situation and someone out there might know him. If we can find any next of kin or close friends who might know of anybody. If we can just find out something about him.”

Trooper Logan Pryor, of the Georgia State Patrol-Griffin Post, is also seeking Cummings’ next of kin.

“His ID is not from Griffin; it’s from Powder Springs,” Pryor said.

It is unknown how long Cummings had been in Griffin.

Foster said Cummings’ relatives are being sought for notification purposes only and will not be responsible for paying the expenses associated with his final arrangements.

“The Coroner, along with the funeral home, will take care of everything concerning (the expenses). That is our responsibility and we will take care of it and give him a proper service. I have to do what my heart tells me to do. I have compassion for him. I will not bury anyone without a preacher and a graveside service,” Foster said. “It’s sad that there are people that nobody knows them. Somewhere, this man’s got kin people. It breaks my heart to have to go get somebody and not know what to do with them and have all these question marks. He’s a human being. Somewhere, somebody – this man has kin people that love him. I have compassion for him. He’s a human being, and he deserves dignity.”

Anyone with information pertaining to Cummings family or friends may contact Foster at 678.859.1564 or The GRIP at 770.713.5839.



  1. Patty McEwen says:
  2. Barbara Otto says:

    Is there any way this can be shared to Facebook?
    Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android

  3. David L Baugh says:

    Shelia, I’m sending you some info by FB PM that may or may not help find a family member.

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