“Here he is dying, and he is consoling me, but that was Cody. That’s who he was, and that’s what his legacy will be.”
Ponder’s work in the community was noticed most at United Way of Norman.
“He volunteered on one of our impact councils for several years and has been on the board. Over time, he became a great friend of mine. He was a great volunteer and such a wonderful person. We will never forget his smile and how he inspired us in so many ways,” said Renee O’Leary, director of community impact at United Way of Norman.
Ponder was born to Kenton Ponder and Danell Vernon Bray on Dec. 21, 1977, in Healdton. Ponder grew up in the towns of Lone Grove and Wilson. He graduated from Lone Grove High School in 1996.
Ponder was a member of the 2011 Leadership Norman Class. He also found time to serve on the boards of Full Circle Adult Day Care, Norman’s Social and Voluntary Services committee, United Way and American Red Cross’ Heart of Oklahoma chapter.
Ponder leaves behind his wife of 15 years, Johnnie-Margaret McConnell and four-legged daughter, Greta Mae Ponder; mother and father, Danell and Danny Bray; mother-in-law, Jane McConnell; mom, Lisa Portwood; father-in-law, Tom McConnell; grandmothers Pat Halstead and husband Robert and Johnnie Spears; brothers Corey Ponder and wife Michelle, Sheppard McConnell, Dusty Bray and wife Desiree and Kris Glenn and wife Casey; sisters Dachelle McClendon and husband Ivron and Jenn Doughty and husband John; godchildren Paige Portwood and Rowan Doughty; nieces Mikayla and Charlotte Ponder; nephews Cole Ponder and Dakota and Slade Bray; dearest friend, Cory Cross; seven beloved Vernon family aunts and uncles, along with their extended families; five McConnell-Kittrell family aunts and uncles and children and members of the Ponder family.