By Dave Gibson, August 29, 2019
On June 7, 2019, Billy Inman, 55, died unexpectedly at his home in Woodstock, Georgia. He, of course, was the father of Dustin Inman, who was killed by an illegal alien on June 16, 2000, nearly 19 years to the day before Billy’s enormous heart simply gave out.
The crash that took 16-year-old Dustin’s life on that Father’s Day weekend was caused by Gonzalo Harrell-Gonzalez, who remains at-large to this day. The illegal alien suffered only minor injuries and fled back to Mexico, where he lives openly, though he was charged in absentia with vehicular homicide, and appears on the U.S. Immigration and Custom’s Enforcement (ICE) Most Wanted List.
Dustin was pronounced dead at the scene, while his parents both suffered serious injuries. In fact, Kathy (Dustin’s mom) spent the next five weeks in a coma, only to awaken to hear the news that her son was dead.
As a result of the spinal and brain injuries, Kathy has been confined to a wheelchair since 2000, and requires at-home nursing care, as well as frequent hospitalizations.
Because both were still hospitalized at the time, the two were unable to attend their son’s funeral, and instead, had to watch the service for their only child on videotape.
Billy spent the next 19 years fighting for his family’s story to be told, and for the illegal alien who destroyed his and Kathy’s lives to be brought to justice.
While he did not live to see the latter, he did see his family’s painful story told time and time again before the entire nation, and everyone who ever learned of Dustin, came to love not only the freckle-faced teenager, but Billy and Kathy as well.
In 2003, D.A. King put aside his own successful business, using his own funds to create The Dustin Inman Society, to tell Dustin’s story and educate the public about the true costs of illegal immigration. King has fought tirelessly, lobbying on behalf of strong borders and strict immigration enforcement.
In addition to telling his son’s story, Billy also spent those 19 years caring for the woman he told this writer many times “meant everything” to him, and forever remained “the love of his life.”
Billy also fought alongside all of the ‘Angel families,’ in the hopes that no other parent would have to bury their child because our government, at all levels, refuses to simply enforce the law.
On a personal note, Billy Inman was a man I considered a friend, and though we never met in person, we did speak frequently. And he was as generous with his time as he was with his compassion. We spoke for the last time about two weeks before he passed away, and Billy was in a nostalgic mood… He reminded me of the first time I called him. “It was back in 2008, and I was cutting the grass, and we talked for two hours about Dustin,” Billy recalled. He thanked me again for writing about his son.
Imagine such a thing… Here’s a man who has lost his only child, his wife is disabled and he has become her chief caregiver in addition to earning a living, while speaking out about illegal immigration. To most of us, the burden would seem too much to bear. And he was thanking me!
As always, I was left as humbled by this man’s gracious nature as I was by his relentless toughness.
I am privileged and to have known Billy Inman. He is now, and will be forever, missed by all who knew him. Though our hearts are saddened, we must remember something important…for the first time in two decades, Billy and Dustin were able to spend Father’s Day together once again.
Godspeed Billy, and thank you!