The Victims: The Best Friends

By: Ray Tranchant
Victims of Illegal Immigration – A Collection of Essays
Hat Tip: Dick Manasseri

I’ve forgiven the man who killed my 16-year-old daughter in a car accident in 2007. Tessa was killed by an illegal immigrant in Virginia Beach while sitting at a stop light. Her friend, Ali Kunhardt, 17, also perished instantly. The explosion was so loud that witnesses said it sounded like a bomb going off. They were hit from behind by a car traveling over 70 mph and driven by Alfredo Ramos, a previous DUI offender and alcoholic.

Tessa and Ali were beautiful girls with tons of future plans. They were skinny little girls, stuffed somewhere in the floorboards when the police and EMT crew arrived.

When I got to the hospital, the friends were lying in beds, separated by a privacy curtain. Both were perfectly still, skin cold to the touch. The EMTs and ER doctor could not save them.

Like Ramos did, hundreds of thousands of illegals in Virginia provide cheap labor to merchants, all invisible in a system good at looking the other way. Virginia doesn’t share a border with Mexico, so awareness isn’t as great here as in Arizona and California. Again and again, however, that system fails Americans. There have been hundreds of similar stories since Tessa and Ali died.

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano has said she will get to the bottom of why illegals are not deported when they are repeat offenders, as Ramos was. He was sentenced to 40 years in prison and was actually smug at the trial. Through my experience, I have some advice about what must be done to solve the problem of illegal immigration. I now know what “sanctuary city” means, as Virginia Beach is accused of being, more than most ever will. It worries me that we would even consider giving 12 million foreigners legal rights to Social Security, health care, and schooling in a time of a $14 trillion national debt. I don’t believe the current system can process this many people and verify that some are not criminals or terrorists.

So, while securing the borders, America must somehow identify everyone using a certifiable national system without comprising constitutional rights. I don’t feel violated when an official checks my driver’s license or passport. It sure beats the funeral procession that I was part of.

Ray Tranchant is an administrator at Tidewater Community College. He resides in Virginia Beach, Virginia.


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