Photo: Army Specialist Moises Gonzalez's Wife Learns She's Not Only One After He's Killed in Afghanistan
When Army Specialist Moises Gonzalez was killed in a rollover incident in Afghanistan on April 25, his family was devastated, but his wife of more two years was about to add shock on top of devastation when she went to receive his body.
At Gonzalez’s funeral on May 7, his wife, Ruth Bayona, sat in the front row, but she was not alone. Bayona was joined by Gonzalez other wife, Darlene Garcia.
Gonzalez’s secret began to unfold when Bayona flew to Delaware from California to receive her husband’s body. However, when she arrived she was told by a casualty-assistance officer that she was not her husband’s only wife. Adding to the shock was the fact that not only would she not be able to take his body, she also would not receive survivor benefits or the service flag at his funeral.
Bayona said she only learned of Gonzalez’s first marriage last year and he had insisted he was divorced from Garcia, who is also the mother of one of his children.
That was clearly not the truth, as the military did not even notify Bayona of her husband’s death directly, because they saw Garcia as his first wife after they were married 9 years ago.
Bayona, who lived in Bakersfield with her and Gonzalez’s son, says, Garcia “hasn’t been in his life for years and the only reason she’s coming out right now is because of the benefits.” Telling KGET, “I was with him during thick and thin for three years and he’s not here to say anything to explain himself. I should get the flag, not her.”
Though she is the second wife, Bayona is only the mother of one of three of Gonzalez’s kids. He reportedly has a child with a third women, though there was not marriage.
Despite Bayona’s upset, Gonzalez’s father asked that no one make a scene at the funeral, and instead remember that his son “died giving his life for the country he loved.”