(NBC News) — Walter Gnida, a retired truck driver and part-time accountant, was 88 years old and suffering from dementia when his name appeared on a loan application from a Christian ministry seeking millions of dollars in federal Covid relief money.
The application was filed by Josh Edwards, whose father, Evan Edwards, was the leader of ASLAN International Ministry based in Florida.
The Edwardses ultimately got a boatload of aid money: $8.4 million. But they’re now in federal custody and facing multiple counts of fraud — as well as the ire of Walter Gnida’s family.
“It’s an utter betrayal,” his son, Kevin Gnida, said in an interview from his home in Edmonton, Canada.
Kevin Gnida said his late father lionized Evan Edwards, a fellow evangelical Christian who spent years handing out bibles in Turkey but would have never knowingly signed off on paperwork that vastly overstated the size of ASLAN International.