His Shoes, His Story: by Rory Andes
A work of fiction based on someone’s truth (1 of 3)
In 1994, I fled a Canadian correctional facility with only two years remaining on a prison sentence after being denied parole. I accompanied a man in an act of complete and total disobedience to a system I felt angry with. Three days later, I was culpable and complicit with him in the death of a father and husband, John, in Washington State. I wish I could take back what happend to this man and his family, but I can’t and I own my actions. Had I managed my emotions, had I not fled, had I done anything and everything different, John might still be alive.
My name is William, a 61 year old native Canadian, and I did the unthinkable by being completely thoughtless. I had lived a lifetime of emotional mismanagement. I was convicted of first degree murder because I put myself in the position of fleeing authority, of attaching to the wrong crowd, and doing the wrong things. In this thoughtless behavior, I denied someone the opportunity to experience their life. I don’t take my actions lightly and I’ve spent the last quarter century trying to make a better contribution than the one I offered John and his family. I initially received a sentence of Life Without Parole for the murder of John, but in 2005 the Life Without Parole sentence was overturned through changes in case law. Regardless of this change in law, I worked to create a change in me. In the beginning, it was slow progress for my flawed way of thinking. I fully recognize those flaws and implemented the changes needed.
At the beginning of my sentence, I still deeply struggled with anger. Fortunately, as often as I was approached to engage in gang activity, I found it repulsive. My anger still persisted and in 1999, I received a major infraction for an assault. This experience brought me back to my time in Canada and it occurred to me that anger is something I had to deal with, needed to deal with. Wrongly, I turned to drugs to quiet my anger. I didn’t do drugs prior to prison and drank socially. However, while in prison, I not only developed a drug habit, but I also beat that, too. My last major infraction for drug abuse was in 2005 and I never looked back. My last major infraction at all was in 2014 for a cell refusal for a toxic situation I couldn’t allow myself to be in. Again, I take ownership of that behavior. I recognize that rules are rules, regardless of my internal justifications…
by Rory Andes
Every prisoner has their truths. Learn them with compassion…
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Rory Andes 367649
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