A Day Closer recently had the privilege to assist in sending Diane, a mother with stage 4 lung cancer, to visit her son Daniel who has currently served 15 years of a 25-year sentence for a non-violent drug offense.
A Day Closer provided airfare and accommodations for Diane and her daughter Rachel. They traveled from their home in Fort Wayne, Indiana, to Tucson, Arizona, where Daniel is in Federal Prison. It had been three years since this mother had seen her son, and this visit is the first time in a decade that Diane has been able to hug her son. The few prior visits because Daniel was held in protective custody, a glass partition separated them, keeping the mother and son from the essential element of human touch.
April of 2018, Diane was given the devastating news that she had lung cancer. During one of Diane's past visits to her doctor, he suggested she go home and get her affairs in order. I believe her doctor's suggestion willed her to fight harder and live longer. This visit with Daniel allowed a mother and son to reconnect, reminisce, to forgive, love, laugh and heal. Diane has relished in telling me how proud she is of her son, and all he has accomplished while incarcerated.
Daniel has been using drugs since he was fourteen-years-old. He became addicted and was an addict. Daniel's previous convictions for simple possession, and owning a firearm, resulted in a 25-year mandatory minimum sentence for a low-level, non-violent drug offense. Due to recent criminal justice reform, if Daniel were convicted today, he would receive a much lower sentence.
Daniel has submitted a commutation application asking President Trump to reduce his sentence. Daniel has made excellent use of his time while incarcerated. Daniel has taken college courses and received degrees that will aid him in securing employment. Daniel has accepted responsibility for his mistakes, he is remorseful, and he has made the necessary repairs not to repeat his past. Daniel states, " I have developed a different philosophy, one that is not dependent on chemicals for happiness, nor one that measures success by the money earned through ill-gotten gains."
Daniel has a well thought out release plan, which includes being able to help care for his mom as she battles stage 4 lung cancer. Our hope and prayer are that Daniel is released before his mother succumbs to the devastation of cancer and is called home by her savior.
Please read Daniels petition to learn more about this man of redemption.
Dianne and her daughter Rachel on the plane to visit Daniel