Cory Samuel Cole
August 8, 2013 - January 30, 2014
Find A Grave Memorial

Samantha Warden reported her son missing on January 30, 2014. Samantha told Police that Howard Cole, her fiancÚ, had left with Cory Cole and she signed an arrest warrant affidavit on the day she reported Cory missing. Howard was arrested, Cory was not with him and he was asked where Cory was. Howard took Police to a rural area where he said he had left the child and where they found him buried in a shallow grave. Police did not know if Cory had been alive when he was left alone in the woods that day. Howard was charged with child abuse, capital murder and illegal disposal of a body and Prosecutors were going to ask for the death penalty. Samantha, who was 30 years old at the time was also arrested and charged with one count of felony child child neglect which stems from Samantha admitting that she had watched as Howard had thrown Cory onto a bed on January 26, 2014 and the next day they were fighting and she ended up leaving the home and that meant Cory was alone with Howard.

In May of 2014, during a preliminary hearing, Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Justin Griffith told Judge Lee Chiltwood that they would like to drop the charge of felony child abuse so that they could concentrate on the capital murder charge. Witnesses were called to stand and testified that Samantha and Howard shared joint custody of Cole, though Samantha was supposed to be supervising visits that Howard had with Cole and she was to stay within a range where she could both hear and see Cole at all times. The incident where Howard threw Cole onto the bed was brought up and how Samantha had left Cole alone with Howard.

Samantha cried in court when pictures of Cole in the shallow grave, were shown to the courtroom and she spent the rest of the day crying and wiping her face. The Defense did not present any evidence at this hearing and the Judge found probable cause to send the case to a grand jury.

Samantha said that she, Cole and Howard were living in her brothers house temporarily while they were trying to save up the money so they could buy a home of their own. Samantha said that she had left during the afternoon of January 27th to go spend the night with a boyfriend. On January 28th, she got a call from her sister-in-law that said Howard had left the house and that the baby didn't seem to be with him. Samantha didn't check to see what was going on until the next day and then she reported Cole missing.

So, Samantha was NOT supposed to leave Cory alone with Howard, but she did anyway and when she's told that Howard left the house but that it didn't appear that Cory was with him, she didn't check the situation out? I guess she's another loser mother who thinks her boyfriend is more important than her son, I am STILL not used to this concept after the hundreds of times I have read it.

Samantha said in court that on January 29th Howard was mad because Cory was crying:

"He picked him up from his crib and held him in the air and said "shut the f**k up" and threw
him down on the bed across the room, four feet away"

This statement was in direct conflict with what Samantha said on February 5th when she said that she didn't understand what had happened because she had never been witness to Howard abuse Cole in the past.

Howard and Samantha have a three year old daughter together an Samantha has a six year old daughter with her ex- husband. I hope neither of these two people ever get the chance to harm the two remaining children.

I found that a trial date was set for  Samantha for January of 2015, though I am unable to find one for Howard.


Members of the community left a memorial at the place where Cody's body was found. It's always amazing to me that strangers care more about the children who die, than their parents do.


Cory Samuel Cole, age 5 months, of Pulaski died Thursday, January 30, 2014.

He was born August 8, 2013 in Montgomery County, to Samantha Anna Jane Warden and Howard Samuel Cole. He was preceded in death by one Brother, Clayford Scott “Clay-Clay” “Bubba” Taylor, Great Great Grandmother and Grandfather- Stanley and Dorothy “Ma” Warden, Great Great Grandfather - Clayford “popal “ Eaton; Great Uncles, David and Larry Warden, Great Great Grandmother, Edith Gordon.

Surviving -
Mother - Samantha Anna –Jane Warden-Pulaski
Father - Howard Cole
Two wonderful sissy’s -
Caylee Taylor - Dublin and Hailey Cole- Pulaski
Maternal Grandparents -
Rick "poppy" and Cindy "nini" Warden Plusasi
Uncles -
Richard "Roonie and Lauren Warden
Richard Welch, Cody Taylor and Blake Warden
Nephews -
Jayden, Alex and Tanner Warden
Great Aunts and Uncles -
Juey and Kevein Mottesheard, Sheila, Debbie Clayford and William Eaton
Cousins -
Khi, Hailey, Brandon, Damarius, Cody, Chloe, Danika, Jayda, John "Bam Bam" Warden, Kenny Warden and Matt Matt Warden.
Great Great Aunt -
Laura "Woody" Coleman
Great Great Uncles -
Ronald (Brenda) Warden, Jerry Warden, John (Tammy) Warden, Bill (Ginger) Warden and Kenneth Warden
Paternal Grandmother -
Hazel Gordon
Uncles -
Stevie Cole and Mitchell Cole
Great Great Grandfather -
Charlie "papaw" Gordon

Funeral services will be held Thursday 2:00 p.m. February 6, 2014 in the Bower Funeral Home Chapel with Rev Carson Linkous and Tammy Thompson officiating.

Visitation will be Thursday from 12:00 to 2:00 p.m., service time at Bower Funeral Home, Pulaski

A private burial will follow in the Warden Family Cemetery, Pulaski.

To send condolences to the family, please visit

Bower Funeral Home, Pulaski is handling the arrangements for the family.

UPDATE: December 23, 2014 - (Thank you to Cat for this update)

In August of 2014, Howard Cole was 32 years old and charged with capital murder along with illegal disposal of a body. A trial date was set for June 1, 2015 and was expected to last two weeks.

UPDATE: July 2, 2016 - Thank you to Kami for providing me with this update.

In July of 2015 it was reported that Howard Cole was in court after admitting that he had murdered Cory. Howard was sentenced to life in prison for what he did to this precious little Angel baby.

"I've had workers tear up, I've had workers cry, I've had workers
get angry. I think it's just every emotion you could think of, you
have because it is what you do every day and it's a small
community and we know one another"
Lee Ann Martin - Pulaski Social Services

Samantha Warden was sentenced to seven years in prison for her part in the death of Cory.
This page was created on November 3, 2014
Death occurred in the state of Virginia

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