“Death Summary Review”
July 7th 2011 7:52am
“Welcome To My Nightmare…Tales from a Dead Man”
“Just as water mirrors your face, so your face mirrors your heart!”
Execution Day in Texas…good morning from Death Watch on Texas Death Row. We are on another lockdown for shake down, yes folks one more time and if you remember we just came off one 1 ½ months ago. This started Tuesday morning and what a great way to start out the final countdown of one’s life. Speaking of final countdowns, the person set to be executed tonight was just taken away from our section for his final visits…and then at 12 noon he will be sent to the Walls Unit in Huntsville, Texas so the execution process can begin.
Yesterday was a very full day for me and the stressful events of being on lockdown doesn’t help matters much. The first event was my 14 day Death Summary Review which is an all over review of the paperwork that was given to me when I was first notified I was to die July 20th 2011. The paperwork consists of various questions stemming from whom to release belongings to, who to release the body to, final meal, who will witness the killing, etc., etc…
Then the day shifted me straight from the summary review right into another legal visit with Sophie of Reprieve…and that was another thought provoking event and I’m extremely grateful for all they do on my behalf. The events that are now surrounding my case and the efforts of Rais with his European Tour to save my life are extremely overwhelming. I’m doing my best to stand tall and walk with my head held high…but I also realize that I’m in Texas and the chance of me being put to death is very real.
From that I went straight into a media visit…and no matter how confident I felt and how I assumed I was not a nervous wreck I was soon proven wrong because as soon as all those lights and cameras came on I melted like an ice cube on hot pavement. Stage fright or the 14 days left to live had me at a loss for words. (Damn)
Now as for the wonderful lockdown…I realize there are a lot of new readers to this blog and you have no earthly idea what a lockdown is and or what a Johnny sack meal is…and I will do my best to explain this to you so everyone will fully understand. Lockdown is when the unit is shut down; no movement of prisoners is allowed…it’s done for security measures or for the shake down procedures that happen every few months on this unit. The raid teams normally treat our belongings with respect but there’s a few overzealous ones; when you have new guards or the hate filled ones from Population that join in on the searches they scatter and destroy everything in sight….legal work will be totally disorganized…photos scattered and tossed into piles and so on and so forth…that’s how it is with the overzealous ones that are extremely unprofessional.
10:32am…they just brought me my final commissary purchase and even though we are on lockdown this unit showed me a bit of human compassion and allowed me to make a huge purchase of food, stamps, and other needed items to help the final days of life move as smooth as possible and I was able to get everyone on Death Watch a pint of Blue Bell ice cream as a farewell gesture that is like a tradition here. To Administration….much obliged.
Now back to what I was saying in regards to lockdown…we are fed these things called “Johnny Sacks” and what that is….a small brown sack with two smashed up sandwiches inside…yesterday for example lunch was a meat sauce sandwich that they said was BBQ…it was sauce…no meat… and a whole potato came with it…that’s all… and for the last meal of the day they brought a smelly fish patty on bread and a crushed up piece of cornbread…
I know there’s gonna be some of you out there in the land of freedom saying for me to shut my mouth and stop complaining….blah…blah…blah…..but if this was you or one of your loved ones or friends you wouldn’t be so fast to speak out the side of your mouth…even the guards who pass this stuff out are in total shock! When this was brought to their attention yesterday our reply was that the new kitchen Captain said all we get on lockdown is 750 calories per day…I guess if one wants more calories he must eat the damn sack! My neighbor said he was eating mayonnaise out of the jar with a spoon…and I actually believe him…hahaha…deep redneck ways he possesses…HAHA!
Well, that covers the explanation of lockdown and the meaning of a Johnny Sack meal. Yes, I fully realize we have a worldwide food shortage and millions of people would love to have these sacks…that’s understood completely by me and many others back here.
I’ve just made me another “Death Row Latte” using a ½ pint of French Vanilla ice cream by Blue Bell…tossed ½ of that inside my hotpot insert, melted it down and then added 3 huge spoonfuls of coffee, 1 sweetener and then filled the insert up with hot water to heat it up again…when done it will make about 12 ounces of rich & creamy coffee that tastes like a Starbucks latte…awesome indeed!
6:34pm…The radio station we all listen to just announced that the execution was carried out and none of us here on Death Watch was prepared to hear the actual events of what was done to the 16 year old girl who was the victim in this case…my heart goes out to the family of this little girl as well as to the family of the one just put to death.
6:52pm…The same radio station is now speaking about my case and how I will be the next featured story…both my Redneck neighbors just yelled over to me and said these words, “Saddle up Stroman, the rodeo is about to begin.” It sure is nice to have such supportive Redneck neighbors such as mine…even in the face of death we find ways to laugh and keep each other’s spirits up.
True American…Loud & Proud and Very Unbroken.
Mark Stroman 2011