Dustin James DeFord, 24, was born December 13, 1988, in Baltimore, Maryland, to Steve and Celeste (Crago) DeFord. Dustin joined brothers Brandon, Darren, Jonathan, and Ryan. Later, Kenton, Stephen, Rebecca, Nathaniel, and Heidi completed the family. The family moved to Columbus, Montana, in 1990 and later to Ekalaka, Montana, in 1996.
Like his siblings, Dustin was homeschooled through elementary and high school, graduating in 2007. He attended Cornerstone Bible Institute in Hot Springs, South Dakota, graduating in 2010. Dustin decisively put his trust in Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior as a young boy. In 2011, he took a short-term mission trip to Northern Alberta, Canada. Through college and after, Dustin worked for the Carter County Fire and Mitigation crew in Ekalaka. His ambition was to be a hotshot firefighter, so he was thrilled when he was accepted with the Granite Mountain Hot Shots.
Dustin was the “life of the party” at any gathering of friends or family. He loved entertaining with his goofy humor, hunting, spotlighting, espresso coffee, noise of any kind, social life, and life in general. He could be seen reading his Bible every morning.
Dustin is survived by his parents, Steve and Celeste DeFord; seven brothers, SSgt Brandon DeFord, Jonathan and Rachel (Anderson) DeFord, Darren and Becky (King) DeFord, Ryan DeFord, Kenton DeFord, Stephen DeFord, and Nathaniel Deford; two sisters, Rebecca DeFord and Heidi DeFord; one nephew, Tucker DeFord; three nieces, Sage DeFord, April DeFord, and Samantha DeFord; grandparents, Lyle and Emily DeFord and Bill and Flo Crago; and too many aunts, uncles, and cousins to list.