"We taught our children to be delinquents." So wrote lifelong criminal Joe Gordon before he was hanged at British Columbia's Oakalla Prison Farm in 1957 for shooting a policeman during a failed robbery. In a letter he scrawled in his jail cell, Gordon described his downfall and made a plea to parents to love and care for their children so they wouldn't end up like him. "Born to Die" is the story of Gordon's sensational trial, set against the backdrop of Vancouver's seedy underworld amid a time of widespread police corruption. His final words are as relevant today as they were then, for although he lived and died in 1950s Vancouver, his tragic life and path to oblivion can be walked at any time and in any community in North America.