Bachtel family mourns loss of loved one

Brian Bachtel
Brian Bachtel
Karen and Richard Bachtel visit their son's future grave site.
Karen and Richard Bachtel visit their son's future grave site.

HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - The family of that Saucier man found dead in Pass Christian last week are preparing to bury their loved one Wednesday.  According to Harrison County Sheriff's investigators, Brian Bachtel was shot in the head during a robbery and his suspected killer is behind bars.

While that's given some relief to Bachtel's family, they say they still can't make sense of his death.

Karen and Richard Bachtel say they're still in disbelief as they look at the future grave site of their son 38-year-old Brian Bachtel.  The father of three was trained as a carpenter. Friends and family say he was outgoing, and protective of his family.

"I just will never understand it. It's something I'll never understand. And how anyone could takes someone's life is just barbaric to me," Karen said.

Family members say June 2nd was the last time he was seen by loved ones. On that day he was at the home of his sister Devan.

"He was always really good at helping people. When they called him, he ran and helped. And I needed some stuff moved out of storage and he came and helped me last minute. And then I gave him a hug goodbye," Devan said.

Devan says she noticed her brother wasn't acting normal that day.

"He was out of character. He was very out of character that day. I tried to get him to stay at my home, but he didn't he refused," said Devan.

Karen says she knew something was wrong when Brian when didn't respond to several text messages she sent him.

"When I said, son do you need anything? I'll come to you. I got good news about one of your sons and when he didn't answer that, I knew right then and there that he was gone," said Karen.

Three weeks later, Brian's body was discovered behind a home on Bell Creek Road in Pass Christian. After so many weeks of uncertainty, family members have found some relief from his body being recovered and his suspected killer being put behind bars.

"I've got that much justice already, even though he hasn't had his court date yet," said Karen.

As family members continue to grieve, Karen takes comfort in knowing he'll never be forgotten.

"You'll always be present at your home. And you'll always be loved by me and your dad and your children and your wife. And your friends," said Karen.

Stephen Hagin has been charged with capital murder in connection with Brian's death. Hagin's girlfriend, Amber Slocum has been charged as an accessory.

Brian will be buried next to his nephew at Wolf River Cemetery Wednesday, June 3 at 10 a.m. An account to cover his funeral costs has been set up at Hancock Bank under the name Brian Bachtel.

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