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A call no parent wants to receive… Gianna Rose Delgado didn’t deserve her end fate according to father

A call no parent wants to receive…
Gianna Rose Delgado didn’t deserve her end fate according to father
BY IVAN SANDERS
STAR STAFF
ivan.sanders@elizabethton.com
Gianna Rose Delgado, 19, was an All-American girl that had endured her share of tough situations in life at such an early age. She had lost her mother two years ago due to a heart attack while she slept.

However, according to her father, Ricardo Delgado, Gia was resilient and turned things around.

Due to being an advanced student, she was taken out of Lake Waccamaw High School in North Carolina and placed in the Academy at the Boys and Girls Club of Waccamaw, North Carolina.

She ended up graduating as the Valedictorian of her class and received a full scholarship to High Point University where she was studying Criminal Law.

Her father gives a lot of credit to the Boys and Girls Club president, Mr. Faircloth, and the staff for their support of Gia.

Gia was a young lady that in everything she ever done or ever touched or any person that she crossed paths with – it was a case of automatic love as she wanted to help everyone she could.

Father’s Day was this past weekend and Delgado wanted to surprise his daughter by taking her out to her first nightclub in Wilmington, North Carolina on Thursday evening so he had her dress up and they along with Delgado’s girlfriend went for an evening of food, laughter, and dancing as Gia was scheduled to work at the Cracker Barrel in Goldsboro through the weekend and then return home on Monday.

However, Gia wouldn’t be coming back home in the way that Delgado was expecting.

The father knew something was wrong. He had spoken to his daughter around 10:30 pm on Sunday night as she had gone to her apartment to let her dog Franklin out and walk him, but come Monday morning the text that he and his daughter shared to tell each other good morning hadn’t come.

It was 5:30 pm on Monday when Delgado received an anonymous call from someone stating they had found a phone on the side of the road five miles from the Tennessee line and that Delgado was the emergency contact.

“I was in shock,” Delgado said on Friday at the Elizabethton-Carter County Animal Shelter. I knew something had happened, I just didn’t get the good morning text that we text each other every morning.”

After receiving the call, Delgado made a call to the High Point police department requesting a wellness check. He received a call back from the police department stating that they had received a call prior to his also requesting a wellness check.

The officer on the other end of the line informed Delgado they had found her car and a female’s body was in it.

“I confirmed her description and they asked me if she had any marks on her and I sent him pictures of the tattoos that she had on her. I sent those to the officer at High Point,” Delgado recollected.

“He sent them back to get confirmation that it was 100 percent her. I waited a couple of hours and around 8 or 9 o’clock Monday evening, I got the confirmation back that it was her in the car and that Michael Cadogan was driving her vehicle which was her ex-boyfriend.”

According to Delgado, the couple had dated for about a year. The pair had been separated since November or a little before.

They were sharing an apartment, but Gia had decided she no longer wanted to live there and she and her father were working on getting her out of her lease and into on-campus living and out of the apartment in an attempt to burn all ties with Cadogan.

Her last day at the apartment was supposed to be Sunday, Father’s Day, but unfortunately, Cadogan got to her first according to her father.

Now, Delgado along with Gia’s brothers, 15-year-old Sebastian and 12-year-old Giovanni, have to come to grips with the loss of a daughter and a sister that Delgado described more as a mom to them all.

“She was the big sister and tried to keep them in check all the time,” reflected Delgado. “She was such a mom. She was mom to even me when I got out of line.”

Delgado had made the trip to Elizabethton to pick up Gia’s pride and joy – her dog Franklin that was in the car with Cadogan when local authorities responded to the discovery of Gia’s car in Carter County.

Deputies had to call out Animal Control officer Darren Lacy to pick up Franklin as the dog sensed something wrong and wouldn’t let the officers close to the vehicle.

Gia had told her dad when she got out of high school that she was going to get a dog but implored him not to purchase one – she wanted to adopt her pet and that was when she found Franklin.

“She told me not to buy one that she was going to adopt and she did just that and she and Franklin were inseparable,” Delgado reminisced about the pair’s relationship. “He was her baby. I use to joke about the dog because he has eyebrows and I said that was the first time I saw a dog with painted eyebrows.”

Delgado believed that Cadogan used Franklin against his daughter because of the love and passion she had for him.

“I know in the past that he kidnapped the dog from my daughter,” said Delgado. “I got texts from my daughter while she was at work that he would take the dog to unknown places. He would use the dog against her to try and get his way. My daughter would give in.

“I think he used the dog as an excuse. So many different scenarios could have happened. He took her dog and I know Franklin was trying to protect her. I know that he knew that he needed to get rid of the dog with her – I know he was going to cause harm to that dog because it meant so much to her and so much to us as her family.”

Delgado said that he will press forward and take care of Franklin because having the dog means that he still has a piece of Gia with him and that he will do everything that he knows that she would do for Franklin to make his daughter proud just as she had made him proud.

The family ironically were making plans to have the ‘Summer of a Lifetime’ as they had chosen to spend it in Tennessee for a family trip to spend time in a cabin and go to Dollywood.

Now that summer has turned into a ‘Nightmare of a Lifetime’ as the family must deal with their tremendous loss.

“She will be missed by so many people,” Delgado said in conclusion. “We are working toward Justice for Gia.”