Friends and fellow veterans mourn loss of elderly couple in home explosion

Couple remembered

A Harlingen neighborhood mourns the loss of a husband and wife as investigators piece together the couple's final hours.

The apparent murder-suicide has shocked the community and left a family without their loved ones, but they told Action 4 News there is much more about Art and Debbie Cohan they want the public to know.

Fire investigators have not yet released the specific cause of the explosion, but the Cameron County Fire Marshall said the fire started in the East side of the home.

Harlingen Police Department found letters and emails left behind by Art leading them to believe that this was no accident.

Steve Cohan said murder-suicide or not, he wants his father to be remembered as a U.S. Marine.

That's how many people here in Harlingen said they will remember Art Cohan, Steve said.

Monday afternoon, the flag was lowered to half mast in his honor at the Veteran's Memorial at Pendleton Park.

Friend and fellow veteran John Grimes, said We're just going to miss him. It TMs just a terrible loss for us, terrible loss for the city, terrible loss for all of us."

Those that gathered at the park described Cohan as a former marine who loved his community and loved his country.

He just had enormous energy for the projects he undertook, Grimes said. I not only count him as a fellow veteran, I count him as a dear friend and this is going to be hard to take.

Grimes remembered spending this past Memorial Day with Cohan.

"Him, I and couple others went over to put the flags on every veteran TMs grave, Grimes said. He ran around there like an 18-year-old putting those flags up," Grimes recalled.

He told Action 4 News Cohan's passion and love for this memorial is something that will never be forgotten.

"First thing I'll ever do when I walk up this memorial and I look at that Marine Corps flag over there I'll remember Art and what he stood for,Grimes said. Every time we put a new pavers in I'll remember Art and what he stood for and his love for this memorial. And I'll never forget him because he was a dear friend.

At this time, Harlingen Police believe Art suffocated his wife while she slept, left his car at a nearby auto shop, and walked home.

Shortly after, they said he doused her body with gasoline and then ignited a fire.

Both bodies were found in the Northeast bedroom of the home-one on the bed, the other on the bedroom floor.

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