Soldier's family seeks answers in fatal hit-and-run - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Soldier's family seeks answers in fatal hit-and-run

John Simmons, 32, of Phenix City was killed while walking along US Highway 280. Authorities believe he was stuck between 5 a.m. and 6 a.m. on March 25. (Source: Facebook) John Simmons, 32, of Phenix City was killed while walking along US Highway 280. Authorities believe he was stuck between 5 a.m. and 6 a.m. on March 25. (Source: Facebook)
Troopers are looking for a 2000-2004 GMC Yukon, with possible damage to the right front headlight area. Troopers are looking for a 2000-2004 GMC Yukon, with possible damage to the right front headlight area.
Friends and family held a press conference Wednesday afternoon. (Source: Curtis McCloud) Friends and family held a press conference Wednesday afternoon. (Source: Curtis McCloud)

Family members of a 32-year-old Phenix City man are asking for the public's help in finding the person who may have driven the SUV that hit and killed the former Fort Benning soldier.

John Lewis Simmons, of Phenix City, was killed while walking along US Highway 280. Authorities believe he was stuck between 5 a.m. and 6 a.m. on March 25. 

Troopers are looking for a 2000-2004 GMC Yukon, with possible damage to the right front headlight area.

"He was always somebody who was there to look out for me even though he had a whole lot of other stuff on his plate," said Steve Simmons. 

He told News Leader 9 that his brother John served in the Army for almost 10 years, did three tours in Iraq and was last stationed at Fort Benning. He ended his career in the Army to spend more time with his son.

"He loved his kids. That's one of the reasons he was always up in Grand Rapids.  He would go back and forth almost every weekend," Simmons' Aunt Lisa Lucchese said.  

The father of four lost his life on Highway 280 following an Auburn trip with friends. Steve says his brother had a disagreement with some people in the car group, got out of the car and starting walking home. 

The next morning, a 9-1-1 call came into the Sheriff's office in Lee County. Sheriff Jay Jones says that two people walking in the area notice Simmons body lying on the side of the road.

 "We are really enlisting the public's help in this particular issue because we feel like someone may know something, someone may have heard something," says Sheriff Jones.

"This [person] took a piece of our heart our life and I hope justice is served," said John's father, John Simmons. 

If you have any information that can help deputies and troopers, please call Alabama State Troopers at 334-745-4651.  

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