Pam Jones, 73, was a retired typing teacher who led a quiet life, raised five children on her own and was always taking people or animals under her wing.
Five years ago, on Aug. 11, 2011, Jones was murdered – found face down in the carport of her residence on 10th Avenue SE, where she had recently moved into a basement suite.
But important questions about the case remain unsolved – who killed Pam Jones and why?
At the time, family and friends expressed disbelief and shock, noting Jones “had no enemies.”
Initially authorities, family and friends believed her death was natural; however, a few days later, following the completion of an autopsy, her death was determined to be suspicious and a homicide investigation was launched.
“It’s so mysterious,” says Terry Greenhough, a friend and colleague of Jones. “There’s no reason to point to anyone. We are completely perplexed.”
Greenhough says Jones was no threat to anyone, instead describing her as a passive person who enjoyed her work as a typing and business teacher at Shuswap Junior Secondary (now Shuswap Middle School) and Salmon Arm Senior Secondary. She first began teaching in Salmon Arm in 1968. She was also described as a caring person, with a generous, kind nature – someone who was always willing to help out another person.
Shelly Harris, Jones’ daughter, declined to comment on the story, citing the nature of the ongoing investigation.
The cause of death has been withheld by the RCMP. Police also will not say whether they have suspects in the case. For their part, police say the case remains active.
“The matter continues to be investigated by the E Division Serious Crime Unit and our local Salmon Arm investigation remains open,” says Staff Sgt. Scott West of the Salmon Arm RCMP.
“Our office and the Serious Crime Unit encourage anyone who may have information to call the Salmon Arm detachment or Crime Stoppers with their information, as we work to provide some measure of closure to the family and friends of Mrs. Jones that were affected by this tragedy.”
In the meantime, the waiting and wondering continues.
“There’s been a lot of speculation among people around town, but it seems like nobody really knows anything,” says Greenhough. “I hate to think that it would remain a cold case.”