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A Family in Prison This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.


I was five when I watched my dad get led out of a courtroom in handcuffs and shackles. There were so many people moving around, I wasn’t sure what was really happening. One thing I did see very clearly and will never forget was the tear rolling down his cheek. That was the first time I had ever seen him cry. Almost 11 years have passed and I still remember that day perfectly. That was the last time I saw my dad outside prison.

Being young, only in kindergarten, I was frightened by this terrifying place. Surrounded by barbed wire and razor fences, I thought it was a horror house. That first visit was just the first of many times I’d go through the process of being frisked and walking through metal detectors.

That first time my family and I stepped into a large room filled with dozens of men wearing blue uniforms, I wondered if the other inmates’ loved ones felt the way we did. The convicts looked almost like clones – until I saw my dad. He looked much thinner and really frail. My mom started crying, and he came over and hugged her.

It felt so surreal, like I was dreaming. Now I can hardly remember my dad without his uniform. Some mornings I wake up and, for a split second, forget he’s not home anymore. Then it hurts even worse when I remember where he is and that my mom and I will never have him back.

It hurts to think of all the special memories my dad didn’t share with us. All the birthday parties and family vacations he missed. It’s one of the worst feelings in the world for a girl to know that her father won’t be there to walk her down the aisle.

While my sisters, mom, and I are out living life, Dad is in that horrific place every minute of his life, only getting to see his family one day a week. My mother and I feel so much pain not having him with us, but I can’t begin to imagine his pain and suffering every day in there.

We continue to hope for a miracle. My dad will be eligible for parole in 2023. We continue to pray that an innocent man will be freed from his life sentence for a murder he did not commit.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.




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Milliana Z. said...
May 14, 2009 at 6:28 pm:
Wow. very beautiful and powerful piece. It is sad when families have to suffer so much. Good work! (btw i will pray for yall too)
 
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babybunny This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
May 12, 2009 at 12:42 pm:
very good! it made me very sad to read this and i hope things will one day be right for you and your family. the main thing thats wrong with our justice system is they often convict innocents and no one knows whos innocent or guilty.
 
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firstsnowfalls This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
May 7, 2009 at 8:41 pm:
very very powerful. i feel for you.
 
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morgan jamison-ems said...
May 7, 2009 at 1:46 am:
wow that is great almost like the one i wrot about my cousin who killed him self cus of drugs i literaly cried as i was reading great peom really great thanks for sharing
 
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xanadu123 said...
May 3, 2009 at 12:53 am:
wow very good yes very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very good!!!
 
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daisydee123 said...
May 2, 2009 at 3:20 pm:
wow this is really good very touching and very sad. life is not fair its nnot fair foor your family to suffer for somthing you didnt even do.
 
Abigail H. This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Oct. 22, 2011 at 7:32 am :
I really admire your courage. It must have taken a lot to write this. But I've gotta say, you are very talented! 
 
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