Monday, December 14, 1987 - 12:00 PM
The witnesses are Kevin Gilmore's parents and were interviewed at the Yoknapatawpha County Sheriff’s Department. The interview was conducted by Detective Nelson and was recorded on a portable tape recorder with the witnesses' knowledge and consent.
- Detective Terrence Nelson
- Donald Gilmore
- Judith Gilmore
Detective Nelson: Thank you for coming in, Mr. and Mrs. Gilmore.
Donald Gilmore: We want to help in any way we can, but we are at a loss as to how Kevin could end up where he was found. Or why.
Detective Nelson: For the record, what are your names and addresses?
Donald Gilmore: My name is Donald Gilmore and I live at 189 Combs Avenue, Oxford.
Judith Gilmore: Judith Gilmore and I live at the same address. I just can’t believe that Kevin’s gone. It’s horrible.
Detective Nelson: Yes, it is. We will do everything we can to discover who did this to your son.
Detective Nelson: When was the last time you saw your son, Kevin?
Donald Gilmore: I can answer that. We--we were at home Thursday afternoon, and Mom was in the kitchen cleaning up. And me and Kevin went into the living room, and we were talking about the upcoming Tulsa game.
Judith Gilmore: Yes, I was cleaning the kitchen. I wish I would have just let that go and spent the time with Kevin. I think I only saw him for a few moments before he left.
Detective Nelson: It’s all right. I know this is hard and we wouldn’t bother you at this time, but we need to gather all the information we can.
Donald Gilmore: We understand, Detective. Please continue.
Detective Nelson: Did Kevin have a job?
Judith Gilmore: Yes, he worked at The Juke Joint. I think he did several jobs there, but I know for sure he was a dishwasher. Not the best of jobs, but he had to work at what he could find.
Detective Nelson: Were you expecting him home Thursday night or was he going back to the dorm?
Judith Gilmore: He was going back to the dorm. He stayed with us all night on occasion, but not that night. Those nights, he spent the time with his teammates.
Detective Nelson: Did you go anywhere that evening?
Donald Gilmore: Yeah, we were at our friends Ray and Josie Simpson's house. We play cards over there a couple times a week. We got home about 9:30 and pretty much went straight to bed.
Detective Nelson: So you didn't see Kevin at all after that afternoon. When did you realize he didn’t go back to the dorm after work?
Judith Gilmore: It was Friday afternoon. I tried to call him, but I got that, you know, leave a message thing.
Donald Gilmore: When Judy didn’t get through, I tried a couple times too, and when he didn’t answer, we started to worry. I went ahead and called Richie, his best friend, and when he said that he hadn’t heard nothing, we really started to worry.
Detective Nelson: How would you describe Kevin?
Donald Gilmore: Just great. I mean, he's a great kid. He never gave us any trouble at all. Oh, he could be a little cocky sometimes, but it was all an act and he’d flash this big grin afterwards. We adored him, but we worked so much that we didn’t spend the time we wanted to with him. Me and Judy didn’t have a good education, so we were so proud of Kevin when he got the athletic scholarship to Ole Miss. We didn’t want him to have it hard like we have it. We can only take odd jobs here and there. Nothing that pays much. I was always afraid Kevin would be ashamed of us. Especially me, since I’m the man and supposed to support the family.
Detective Nelson: You don’t have to explain that. Life is hard for some of us. Can you think of any reason why Kevin would be out in the area where he was found?
Judith Gilmore: I still can’t figure out why he was there.
Detective Nelson: Did Kevin have any problems at school?
Donald Gilmore: No, not that I know of. He worked real hard to get good grades. He wouldn't have done nothing to mess up being in the sports program.
Detective Nelson: What about his roommate? Did he and Kevin get along?
Judith Gilmore: You mean Nick? Well, I believe they did. He never said otherwise. I believe they got along good. I mean, I don’t remember him saying anything about trouble with him.
Detective Nelson: Did Kevin have a girlfriend?
Judith Gilmore: Yes, he had a girlfriend. That would be Carly Brock. Well, they got along real good. I mean, well, Kevin was the boss in that relationship. I mean, he treated her good, but he felt like they were already married so he kind of told her what to do, but she never complained that I could tell.
Detective Nelson: How about friends?
Donald Gilmore: Well, Richie Turner, that's his best friend. They've known each other forever. He--I think Richie would do just about anything Kevin asked him to do. I suppose it could be an act, but if it is, he does it real good.
Detective Nelson: How about at work? Did he get along with everyone there? Have any problems?
Donald Gilmore: Well, like I said, we didn’t spend a whole lot of time with Kevin. I don't know about everybody. As far as I know, it was just a job. He didn't particularly like it. It was just something he had to do.
Detective Nelson: How about his teammates? Was everything copacetic there?
Judith Gilmore: We tried to go to all the games. We missed the last game because we had a chance for both of us to get better jobs than what we had. We were interviewing for a job that wanted two people to clean, and me and Donny thought it would be good if we could work together.
Detective Nelson: So when you were at the games, you saw whether he got along with his teammates?
Judith Gilmore: You know, I recall him complaining about someone that he just couldn’t deal with that was on his team. I can’t remember who it was? I know he mentioned it several times. Do you recall that, Donny?
Donald Gilmore: No, I'm sorry. I don’t.
Detective Nelson: If you happen to remember that name, be sure to let us know.
Judith Gilmore: Oh my, you don’t think it was one of Kevin’s teammates that did this to him, do you?
Detective Nelson: We don’t know, but we want to follow up on everything just to make sure. How was Kevin’s health?
Judith Gilmore: Well, he had diabetes. He had to have insulin injections every day at scheduled times. He had been taking care of that by himself. He knew he couldn’t ever forget about it.
Donald Gilmore: We got him one of them MedicAlert bracelets, you know, just in case something happened, the medical people will know what to do. We didn’t want to take a chance on him passing out and going into a coma, so it was very important to us that he wore that all the time. And he did.
Detective Nelson: What was on the bracelet?
Donald Gilmore: It had his--that critical medical information and then the MedicAlert ID number.
Detective Nelson: Are you absolutely sure that he wore it at all times and never took it off?
Judith Gilmore: He wore it all the time. I mean, he wouldn’t even take it off to shower. He knew how important that was. You would have to fight him to get that off of his arm.
Detective Nelson: Did he ever have any problems with the diabetes? Like taking too much or too little insulin?
Donald Gilmore: A few times when he was feeling bad, he would have to inject a little bit more. And the--he'd go to the doctor, and they'd adjust it, and it just seemed OK.
Judith Gilmore: Well, and he had an aunt--well, my sister--who has diabetes, and she--I think he learned a lot about it from her.
Detective Nelson: What was her name again?
Judith Gilmore: LeeAnn Elliot.
Detective Nelson: So he took care of himself. What did he do?
Donald Gilmore: We all made it a point to find out what this disease would mean to him and his life. It is a terrible disease. He will have it the rest of his life, or would have. He had to have a special diet and follow it intensely. Some things he couldn’t eat and some food he had to eat. He learned all of that. He carried the diet with him for a long, long time until he had it memorized.
Detective Nelson: How long did he have diabetes?
Judith Gilmore: We found out when he was in high school. He had had health issues, but we had no idea that it was diabetes that was the cause of his feeling bad so much, until he took his aunt to her doctor one day and she told him he should be tested.
Donald Gilmore: We really need to get going, Detective. I mean, we have to work pretty hard just to pay the bills, and I guess now we're going to have to pay for a funeral.
Detective Nelson: All right, you can go. We’ll be in touch.
Donald Gilmore: Thank you. Goodbye.
Interview ends: 12:35 PM