Paragraph 6 reads: "Did my father cause my sister's death? No. I would venture to say that all the antidepressant medication she was on played a huge role in that. After all, Dad has five other children who are doing just fine, thank you very much."
Guest Column: Defending works of forgotten DA I find in myself an array of emotions in writing this: sadness, anger, love and joy. As we celebrated Independence Day, and before that Father's Day, someone special had been on my mind, who no doubt, were he still alive, would've been looking forward to a barbecue with family and friends. On Father's Day, he would have had big hugs and kisses from his daughters and a firm handshake from his only son.
By Roxanne Hill Garno
Roxanne Hill Garno
But he's not here and hasn't been for a little over 11 years. This man was my dad, 47th District Attorney Danny E. Hill. A man who fought hard for years upon years to rid our great community of the worst of criminals, who would kill, maim and violate without a smidgen of remorse.
As I look back on his short but full life, I don't remember the drinking, the bad press or the way most of the community turned on him. Rather, I look back in awe that in the 47 years this man was alive, he contributed more to the city he loves than most people will if they live to be 100.
When my baby sister died, my father was made out to be a horrific man who had passed down suicidal genes to his youngest daughter, thereby causing her untimely death. And of course, the Globe-News had to put that on the front page for all to see.
What a tragedy. Instead of remembering him for all he had done for our community, all people could talk about was how the horrible Danny Hill had caused someone else's death, his own child's no less, almost 10 years after he had died. He had no one to stand up for him and say, "No! That's not true!" nor could he even defend himself. So, being his oldest and much wiser daughter, I decided to do it for him.
Did my father cause my sister's death? No. I would venture to say that all the antidepressant medication she was on played a huge role in that. After all, Dad has five other children who are doing just fine, thank you very much.
Why am I writing this now? To make all of you remember who Danny Hill was as a person. He was charismatic, funny, witty and, just like you and I, had his shortcomings. He wasn't God; he was but one man, working hard every day to keep all of us safe.
Have all of you forgotten his work with abused children, trying to get laws passed so that children didn't have to endure abuse at the hands of their loved ones? Sure you have. After all, people would rather remember the last year of Dad's life and his personal battles than remember the 18 previous years, when he was but one man fighting for all of us, fighting for this community. He loved Amarillo more than any of you will ever know.
My dad was out to change the world. He wanted all of us to live in a better place, where locking our doors at night wasn't a necessity for our safety. Criminals feared my father. Knowing that Danny Hill was prosecuting their case sent fear to their very core.
Dad wanted peace and harmony for all, including himself. Too bad he never got to experience that.
The other night I Googled my dad's name; a name which should've brought up hundreds of articles and pictures about his amazing accomplishments. I couldn't find one thing. Not one! What a shame that he was so easily forgotten.
Forget about what happened in the final stages of this great man's life. Remember who he really was: a son, a brother, a father and a defender of people, big and small. He deserves at least that.
Roxanne Hill Garno lives in Amarillo.