Age: 20 | State: Georgia | County: Muscogee | Case Status: Open
Dalton Ray Gallops
11/17/1999 – 08/04/2020
My name is Wanda Gallops. I lost my 20 year old son August 4, 2020 in Columbus Ga to fentanyl poisoning. My heart is forever broken and I will miss my only child until the day God calls me home. There really are no words to adequately describe this pain and anguish. It never leaves.
Before I tell you about Dalton’s death, I want to tell you about Dalton’s life. He was a very handsome and loving son who was known to stop on the road to help a turtle cross. Dalton was also very athletic. He excelled in Jiu Jitsu, wrestling, and boxing – winning many metals & championship belts. He loved nature and was most at home riding his 4-wheeler in the creek on our property. He was also a big prankster and as a night shift nurse, there were many times I encountered a creepy crawly in my bed. Dalton loved his family, especially his 2 year old daughter, Kadence. Her name was tattooed on his forearm.
On August 4, 2020, my husband and I got the phone call that would change our lives forever. Dalton was gone. We later learned that he took what he thought was an oxycodone. Toxicology revealed that fentanyl is what caused his death. Dalton did not want to die. He ADORED his daughter! His close friends said that Kadence was all he talked about. Also, Dalton had recently started a new job and was working at learning a new skill. His boss told us that he was one of the hardest workers he had. We will never know what he might have accomplished! And now, a 2 year old daughter is fatherless.
Because we have Dalton’s phone that is full of valuable information, we know who sold Dalton the drugs that killed him. There was also a girl that was with him who actually drove him to get the drugs. Her 5 year old son was present also. At the time of his death, she also told authorities who gave Dalton the pills. She provided the dealer’s name, phone number and exactly where to find him. However, getting the police to investigate Dalton’s death was a challenge and we, as parents, had to become investigators ourselves. Thanks to an officer with Narcotics who heard our story and learned of Dalton’s death, the dealer was arrested for selling to an undercover cop. Dalton’s case is currently active and we continue to fight for justice for the poisoning and murder of our son.
We also later learned that Dalton had passed away approximately 6 hours before we were notified AND before 911 was called . Our son lay dead for hours before the girl that was with him even tried to obtain any help for him. She also stole his money and took pictures of him during this time. She can be seen on hotel surveillance cameras taking a large duffel bag to her car at around the same time that 911 was called. So far, no charges have been filed against her.
If laws aren’t changed & dealers aren’t held responsible for this poison they sell, many more people will die. We have to take action to stop this. I have been on local news talking about these deadly pills. I have contacted my governor and hope to facilitate changes in state laws. I have also written the White House & had contact with the DEA.
As parents, we are forever broken. Our hearts will never fully heal until we see Dalton again in heaven. Until then, I have to do my best to make sure his baby girl knows what she meant to him. Each time she asks for her daddy, that hole in my heart becomes a little bigger. It’s my burden to bear but if I can save one more family from this awful pain, it will bring me some comfort and peace.