It has been one year since the Pelican Bay/CDCR Hunger Strike ended (the first one) and I would like to begin blogging again.
Bryan and I have been writing a lot and both tending to the task of getting through each day. Some friends have encouraged me to post to this blog again so we can share the happenings of Bryan's life. And my life.
Although the major requests for changes at CDCR are slowly going through the process, this blog is about Bryan and his quality of life. Here is how Bryan's life is better one year later.
1. Bryan's former youth pastor, Laura, found Bryan through this blog last year and began writing to him. As she is from his home area in Texas, she has been sending pictures of home, etc. This past weekend she visited with Bryan !!!! Thank you Laura, perhaps you can send me an email with a post for this blog? A guest submission so everyone can hear about Bryan and your visit?
2. Bryan qualified to have a picture of himself taken after 16 years (allowing SHU prisoners photos was a concession won during the hunger strike) and it was sent to his family and friends. I will post it at the end of this entry.
3. Bryan qualified for color pens and pastels, another concession CDCR offered to end the first hunger strike. He was limited for the last 20 years to only doing pictures with pen and ink. He did the Butterfly for me and the Blue Jay for his mother. They are posted at the end of this entry. Feel free to copy and use them.... they make nice cards.
4. In May 2012, I had some very bad family news and since there was nothing I could do here, I drove to Pelican Bay to spend some time with Bryan. Our visits aren't always about me cheering him up, in this situation he was the kind of friend who just listened and comforted me. It was also great to spend the weekend with several of the wives who were in Crescent City to visit with their husbands in the SHU. Their love and understanding was the salve I needed to move forward.
Here is the Butterfly he drew for me with colored pens and pastels.
Here is the Blue Bird he drew for his mother with colored pens and pastels .
Bryan - he is 39 years old and has been in solitary confinement in the Pelican Bay SHU, Short Corridor for 16 years. He is one of the original group that began a small hunger strike there in July 2011. The July 2011 strike grew to 6,600 prisoners and the second hunger strike in September grew to over 12,000 world wide.
This is the first picture in 16 years he has been able to provide to his family and friends.