This is my big brother James. He is desperately lonely in prison. Everyone but myself and his son have seemingly forgotten him. We grew up together, me and him, even though we are 2 out of 6 siblings, it was just us two for a long time. He is 6 years my senior but we spent our childhood playing football, Nintendo, wrestling, hide and seek, basketball horse... He built the most awesome treehouse when I was 4. It had two stories and a basement! This was just the beginning signs of his ability to build.
James owned a fencing business for many years, building some of Central Texas' most beautiful fencing. Truly talented. In high school, my brother was exceptionally good at golf and had a knack for science. Something changed for him in his sophomore year. I don't know if any of you have heard about the yogurt shop murders in Austin, it was national news, but he had previously dated an employee and something just changed in him after that. He was so sad, turned to drugs, acted out, got in fights with our mom... eventually was kicked out.
For him, our mother moved on with a new husband and new kids... James was just... not important anymore. My brother loves a good time. Barbecues, fishing, random drives to the lake or the coast, drinking beer, laughing, telling stories... he has some really interesting stories; he can literally have a good time almost anywhere.
In his 40 years on the outside, he really lived. My brother's downfall over the years was women. He was always trying to replace a mother's love. He would bend over backwards for women, claiming any of their kids as his own, just really trying to be that father he never had and get that love from a woman he felt he lost. My brother never knew who his dad was. Our mom has changed the story many times over the years and that really haunted him. Don't get me wrong. Our mom is not a bad person. She was just... different. My brother is now serving 35 years without parole for a crime his daughter/my niece claims happened. We don't know what really happened, only she does. While my brother was awaiting trial, he was eventually released for 2 weeks prior to trial because they took too long to indite him. I always thought that if he was really guilty, he would have ran. Why stick around to spend the rest of his life in prison? He could have pleaded out for 20 but he was dead set he didn't do it. I know I would have ran if it was me, but he was certain he would be found innocent.
Instead, he was handed 35 years in April of 2017 and that was the last time I saw him. James is really trying to keep his head up. He has been studying the Bible, really trying to keep his head in his faith and not get discouraged. But he is incredibly lonely. I write him sometimes, but I always feel like I just don't have anything to say. I have had books sent to him and signed him up for magazine subscriptions, but I mean, when you have nothing else to do, you can run through those in a day.
He could really use a friend. Write him. Write anything. You could literally type out your daily events or the news and he would feel better. He just feels so forgotten and alone. His unit is so loud the phone system hardly ever recognizes his voice to approve the call even though I prepay them. He had been trying for months to get his voice rerecorded so he can call. I haven't spoken to him on the phone in months. There are 3 phones and 150 guys with no time limit. At 6¢ a minute, those guys can talk all day, hogging the phone. I really hope if you have the time and 50¢ to send him a letter via Jpay or pop a letter in the mail, that you would consider reaching out to my brother. He really needs some compassion right now.
Thanks for reading!
(Written by Family Member/Friend)