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I’ve been in prison for nearly 35 of my 62 years on earth. Though I certainly regretted my role in the crime that took an innocent life, remorse didn’t fully begin to develop until I lost two of my own family members to gun violence in 2008.

Another significant factor in my overall rehabilitation came in 2015 when I was invited to paint murals at Avenal State Prison. I felt like I was doing what I was born to do. Painting became so therapeutic for me that I was moved to co-found a self-sustaining art group a year later in order to offer other inmates the opportunity to realize the same benefits I derived through this creative outlet.

On Wednesday, January 11, 2023, I was invited by Humans of San Quentin (HoSQ) for an interview following a donation of some of my artwork.

My immediate impression was one of inclusion. I felt a warm, authentic welcome into the HoSQ fold from the moment Diane, Sid, Laurel, and the inside team introduced themselves and shared their vision with me.

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