Ode to Billy Joe Colwell

 Southern Gothic includes deeply flawed, disturbing or eccentric characters who may be involved in hoodoo, decayed or derelict settings,[grotesque situations, and other sinister events relating to or stemming from poverty, alienation, crime, or violence.

When one thinks of In-Home Elder Care you imagine services that improve the quality of life, increase safety, and simply make life less of a chore for the elderly.  Evidently in March 2019 the Medical Assistant sent to aid Billy Joe Colwell influenced the elderly man to change his will at 77 years of age shortly before he died and completely disinherit his entire family. 

you can read the will in its entirety at the bottom of the page.

Influenced how?  In a good way?  Did Amber Boren the care employee provide services that made the deprived and neglected Billy Joe realize that true loving people exist in this world?

So he wanted to leave a little something for the young woman?

“I do not believe for one single moment Billy would disinherit his grandchildren or great grandchildren. He loved them! I know he would not turn against his family. I believe with all my heart he was taken advantage of in his state of mind.” – Colwell Family

Or was he duped into signing a new will that literally left everything he possessed to a young woman who was sent to care for him in his final time?

Billy Joe was born on July 20, 1941 in Madisonville, TX to Eual Sidney and Lela Mae (Halliday) Colwell.  He graduated from Madisonville High School and attended both Lon Morris College and Sam Houston State University.  Billy worked for many years at Carter’s Grocery and retired from The Texas Department of Criminal Justice.  He played for the Carter’s All-Stars which was a well-known traveling softball team for many years and was instrumental in bringing Little Dribblers basketball to Madisonville.

Billy Joe’s brother Donny told us that like his twin brother who passed away before him. He was out of his mind the last 6 months or so of his life. Several residents in the area commented on the company that provided Amber Boren to care for Billy Joe.

“What kind of company sends someone to care for an elderly person who disinherits the family through possible deception and trickery?” – Candy Williams Director of Operations Creative Solutions In HealthCare

His wife of over 50 years had passed a few years prior.  His brother lived nearby his home and is not the executor of the will but a cousin who resides in Houston primarily.  His 3 children and all his grandchildren are mentioned in said will and receive no inheritance.  Except for one son to receive $7,000. Why are they listed and not left anything?  A good question.  The will is rather long and spends the first several pages going on about a family trust that is pretty typical for wills with a large family.  The surviving family members are identified in the beginning of the will.

Then suddenly on one page towards the end everything is left to Amber Boren of Centerville Texas. 

She is the daughter of Martin Boren and stepdaughter of one Christine Bain.  It is of interest to note they are knee deep in controversy involving a forged will and suspicious death in Leon County.

Would Billy Joe actually disinherit all of his grandchildren for a young woman he had no relation with? Or did he?

Foul play? It’s possible. One theory if that were the case is the page of the will leaving everything to Amber Boren was intentionally left out until Bill Joe had signed it. Then that page added and initialed and the pages numbered after.

We reached out to Shirley Bain in Centerville to find out if it was another “Daddy Daughter relationship.” She told a Warner Brothers Reporter in 2017 that was the case with the controversy her daughter is currently involved in. Gerald Willhelm died under suspicious circumstances when NBC in Dallas televised the story. In less than 48 hours of Gerald being discovered to be deceased, Christine Bain submitted his will for probate. She stated that it was a complete surprise that she was his heir and had no idea until his death.

Thus far there has been no response from Shirley.

(to save time go to 4:55 on the video. about 3/4 to the end)

Who is the caregiver here?

Billy Joe’s will goes on to provide stipulations regarding his heir. Note the last part in second paragraph.

“My Trustee shall pay to the beneficiary for whom the Trust is created the amounts out of the net income and, if net income is insufficient, the amounts out of principal of the Trust that my Trustee determines are necessary for the health, education, maintenance or support of that beneficiary.”

Is this in regard to the Halliday Oil Leases

“There are mineral rights that Billy inherited from his parents and even through the grandparents. Quite a bit I believe. What is going on with those we are not really sure and do not have much information. No one did mineral deeds 40 years ago for one thing.” – Colwell Family

4.05. If property would be distributed to a beneficiary if he or she were to survive me, or to survive until the termination of a trust, and that beneficiary has died leaving lineal 
descendants. then notwithstanding any contrary direction of disposition in this Will, the share to which that deceased beneficiary would have been entitled shall pass to his or her lineal descendants, per stirpes.
4 .06. If property is to pass upon my death or upon termination of a Trust, to a beneficiary who has not attained the age of thirty (30) years, then notwithstanding any inference in this Will that it is to pass free of trust, that property shall be held in a separate Trust for that beneficiary. The Trust Estate of each Trust created pursuant to this Paragraph shall be distributed as follows: My Trustee shall pay to the beneficiary for whom the Trust is created the amounts out of the net income and, if net income is insufficient, the amounts out of principal of the Trust that my Trustee determines are necessary for the health, education, maintenance or support of that beneficiary. My Trustee shall deliver the remaining Trust Estate to that beneficiary free of trust, when that beneficiary attains the age of twenty-five (25) years.

The will itself is witnessed by 2 other people.  Samantha King, a cousin of Amber and Jacqueline Searcy.  The will was submitted for probate March 11, 2019.  Exactly 10 days after the man’s death.  Not quite as fast as her stepmother probates a will.

Family and friends of Billy Joe suspect he thought he was leaving a better organized will of trust for his family.  Primarily his numerous grandchildren.  Also, of interest in the breakdown of who gets what Amber and her husband are both named for Billy Joes residence.  That might be awkward if they choose to live there.

“She (Amber Boren) only came by Billy Joe’s residence part time. Not long after she started he was suspicious of family. We believe she was turning him against his own family. Though he was old we are suspicious about his death. As far as we know there was no police report. There was no autopsy or toxicology done. She did give him his medication.” – Colwell Family

On a previous article regarding the forged will in Leon County. One of the witness’s mother in the Madison County will and also a Boren family member sent a message to whom we suspect was meant to be for another victims daughter.  It was not forwarded. However we chose to publish it here.

We made some inquiries and were informed by sources in both Leon and Madison County they like other peoples things. Especially the consolidation of land and monetary resources into their family from other families.

Has Texas Adult Protection Services bothered to look into this case?

APS’s mission is to protect older adults and persons with disabilities from abuse, neglect, and exploitation by investigating and providing or arranging for services, if needed, to stop or prevent further harm. –
Jordan Berry Brazos Valley Adult Protection Services

Exploitation may result in loss of property, money, or income. Exploitation means misusing the resources of an elderly or disabled person for personal or monetary benefit. This includes taking Social Security or SSI (Supplemental Security Income) checks, misusing a joint checking account, or taking property and other resources.

Financial exploitation is the illegal or improper use of another person’s money or property for personal profit or gain. Financial exploitation of adults who are elderly or disabled is an increasing problem and protecting them from becoming victims is everyone’s business.

Texas law says anyone who thinks a person 65 years or older is being abused, neglected, or exploited must report it to DFPS.

A person who reports abuse in good faith is immune from civil or criminal liability. DFPS keeps the name of the person making the report confidential. Anyone who does not report suspected abuse can be held liable for a misdemeanor or felony.


A Leon County resident requested to provide a statement for this article yet remain anonymous.

“From poverty to alligator skin boots in 4 easy steps.”

Watch out for spider webs

What case are the Boren’s knee deep in already?

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