Thursday, March 5, 2009


Lindell Kay Closer Look, Cold Cases Saturday, February 28th, 2009
I felt it necessary to post Lindell's responses to questions of what Billy as a brother or Billy as a dad meant to those who love and miss him. Dateline did a wonderful job of telling the story leading up to his death. These are from the heart memories of Billy the man he was, who also had five siblings. The following responses voice my own.

Throughout my work on this case, I have gathered statements from various members of Marine Sgt. William Miller’s family. This in thier own words, is what Bill Miller meant to them.

Georgia, Billy’s sister:

The most important thing for people to know is that Billy was loved very much: as a son, as a brother, as a father and as a friend. He was third in a family of six and we were always referred to as the “six little Millers.” We didn’t have much in the way of material possessions, but were loved and always had enough food on the table.

Billy loved life, loved animals and loved his family. He was so proud to become a Marine because my father was a Marine. Billy served his time during the Vietnam era, which was a horrible time for my family as well as the country. My brother was killed before he had a chance to live his life and the people responsible for his death have gone all this time without being held accountable.

My mother was so heartbroken. She died without justice being done for her son, but hopefully the rest of us will get that opportunity.


Wendy Miller-McGee, Billy’s daughter:

My father means the world to me. I was a year old when my father was murdered. I never knew that I had two sisters until I was 16 years old. I never got to know my dad’s side of the family and only got to meet my grandmother once in my life. That was due to the fact that my mother kept me from them, did not let them know where they were living and did not tell me anything about my father.

I only finally found about my father’s family because I found an old letter with my grandmother’s name on it. The last time I was at my father’s grave I was 8 years old. Ever since then I have always wanted to go back, especially now that I have children of my own. When my husband Dave told me we were going to Washington, D.C., on a trip I was so excited and could not wait. When we finally made it to my father’s grave I could not stop crying, it meant the world to me to be there with my husband and daughter. I really wished that my son, William, could have been there as well.

As I was growing up I have always wondered about my father and I never dreamed in a million years that I had two sisters as well.

I have lost a lot because my father was murdered. It breaks my heart that I never got to know my father, and he never got to meet his grandchildren. My heart breaks every time I think of what my father and I have missed out on.

What kind of father would he have been? Was he funny? What kind of person would I be today if I had the chance to grow up with my father. What kind of grandfather would he be? Would he be proud of me? So many questions that cannot be answered because my father was taken away from me. He will always be my hero!


Tamara, Billy’s daughter:

I just wanted to send a short note letting you know how thankful I am to you for taking an interest my father’s murder. My aunt Sharron and sister Wendy sent me the article you wrote and it moved me to tears.

I too had to grow up wondering what it would be like to have a father. My life, I believe, will be complete if the murderers are put where they belong.


Bonnie, Billy’s sister:

Billy was my older brother. I was next to the youngest, so he helped look after me. He was always kind to me and I was so fortunate to see him twice just before he was murdered

Billy actually saved my life when I was in 8th grade. We were swimming in the ocean in New Hampshire and I got caught in the undertow and it started to sweep me out to sea. Billy pulled me out of the water and saved my life.

To see this brought to justice would be so wonderful, and I think personally that the souls of those who killed Billy would come to peace.


Kimberly, Billy’s daughter:

I am the eldest of his three girls and sadly I have only one living memory of him because he and my mother divorced when I was only 2. Because he remarried to Wendy’s mother and deployed so much in Vietnam he was only able to come to Wisconsin for one visit before he was murdered, I was just 6.

I too have had to grow up with old photos and old stories in place of a father I never got to know.

I too grew up wondering what life would have been like if he had been around (even as a divorced father, with visits and phone calls, etc.). Would I be a different person? What fatherly advice would he have given me? Would he have cheered at my college graduation? Would he have cried giving me away at my wedding? Would he be proud of who I’ve become?

I wonder too about my kids - two more in a total of eight grandchildren Billy never got to see - and whether he’d be proud of them. It never ceases to amaze me just how deep the death of one family member can cut and how long. My own children (aged 7 and 11) sense the loss of someone they know should have been in their lives. They are always asking me to tell stories about the grandpa they never got to know … except I don’t have any to share with them because I was robbed of my own life with him. Family members have told me how much my 7-year-old son looks like Billy and how he seems to have the same high-energy, sense of humor, and untamed spirit that my father had.

It’s hard to write this without crying a bit and you may wonder how someone who doesn’t remember their father could come to tears so quickly at the thought of him, but when you have to grow up with questions in place of a father - instead of having memories to comfort yourself with, every new experience in life bring up another long list of unanswered questions, what-if’s, and if-only’s that never seems to end.

No comments:

Post a Comment