While attending the University of Arizona, Justin St. Germain returns home from classes one afternoon only to be informed by his brother that their mother, Debbie, has been murdered in Tombstone, Arizona.
Shot in the back in her trailer, Debbie appears to have been the victim of domestic violence gone to the ultimate extreme. Her current husband, number five, has gone missing and is the prime suspect.
Given Debbie’s somewhat troubled history in Tombstone, both with a succession of ill-fated marriages and relationships, as well as in her business dealings, her murder amounts to little more than a blip on the locals’ radar–fodder for bar gossip and not much more.
For twenty-year-old Justin, however, his mother’s murder marks a very clear turning point in his life, even though it will take him nearly seven years to realize it and embark on the journey that led to Son of a Gun: A Memoir.