Good Gone Bad and the Bad Gone Good

Michael B.

My whole life was riddled with misfortune caused by drug and alcohol abuse. I just don’t know how I went from a cub scout gold medal winner for 2 years and, an all-star football and basketball player to what I’ve became. My behavior was fueled by insanity with the help of drugs and alcohol. I use to think that the older kids were so cool because they were drinking 40oz Colt 45 and smoking weed in the park. That is the moment delinquency was starting to set in. I can remember watching the movie Grease for the first time. Oh my god! This changed my life in a blink of an eye. Being a greaser looked cooler than being an all-star jock. Greasers got the hot ass chicks.

On my way home from school I was confronted by the other kids on the other side of Stickney Ave. I never backed down or never gave up in the fights and one day they said either you’re going to join us or you will be fucked-with, until you do. Well that was the Stickney 33’s Bloods. I became the one everyone’s parents warned them about. I started selling weed, acid, guns, and knives. I was vandalizing on a nightly bases car window, house windows then one night a friend wanted me to break in to this Catholic school. That was the start of my stealing days. Then… I went to Juvenile lockup for the first time and stepped right back into the crack epidemic.

I was convicted of felonious assault with gun specifications and went to prison for 5 years. I was bound over to the adult system. The judge told me I was going to be a career criminal… and he was right. It seems easier to defend the actions than to honestly examine them. We are quicker to attack than admit. Admissions require courage. When we summon the courage to take over ownership of our experiences to see them just as they are, to feel the blueprints of our lives. We will face our fears and find the transparent beliefs that create them. Becoming more honest with ourselves means introducing more honesty into the collective consciousness of the world, and this lays a foundation upon which an enlightened way of life can be built.

I had a very hard time with addiction throughout my life time that caused me to get an extensive police record and imprisoned in and out for over 30 years with two long stents and cases throughout the Northern tristate area. My record is sick. It is very embarrassing, regretful and stunning. However, without that phase of my life. I would not be the man I am today. I lived my life with no regard to human life. I was the Captain of the bloods! I was the Iceman. The first white man in the state of Ohio to reach captain status in that gang. I was having drugs brought to me by prison guards and in food boxes through the mail office and got caught. They charged me with “Funding of drug trafficking into an Institution, a first degree felony charged like some kingpin it made the Mansfield Newspapers for days. I was originally sentenced to serve 5-years in prison and ended up doing 8 years for 2 “in house” (prison) cases I got caught for. I basically spent my whole life in prison and didn’t care. I would prepare myself for jail. I watched my 3 children grow up from a prison cell when my family sent pictures.

Finally, I had enough with life and I wanted to commit suicide after I sliced a person up and thought I was going back to prison for a very long time for doing that. I just couldn’t take it anymore. Well I woke up at Flower Hospital with the nurses saying “you almost died if you would have gotten the rest of the heroin that was left in the syringe in your arm” you would have died. I said “I was trying to fucking die god damn it! How the F%^%K did I make it through this.” I had a divine intervention…That’s what happened… yes it is possible, God had a plan. I didn’t want to get sober that was the farthest thing from my mind. But sobriety was the beginning of a whole new chapter in my life. This power to change came from the people/program of Alcohol Anonymous and my higher power who I call god.

I have a degree in the Criminal Justice System with four classes to complete my CJS bachelor’s degree this spring 2017. I will be finishing up my bachelor’s degree with my internship done though my x parole officer who is now the administrator of the Juvenile Prerelease. Huh! What… Who has ever heard that before. I will start my master’s degree in CJS in the summer of 2017 and I have a masters in non-compliant Prison. I have full custody of a 5-year-old precious little girl. God gave me a second chance, and the privilege to raise my child. I am presently on the board of directors for the Veterans Association. I am on the HMIS committee (Homeless Management Information System) I am a member of the One Village Council board. I am on the Re-entry Collation Board for Ohio, and do an abundance amount of community service work. I work and live The Criminal Justice System, adhering to ethical and moral principles characterized by honesty and fairness. I was the budget director who worked his way up to be the Associate Director of the Alcohol, drug afflicted Men’s, Stabilization Service called ADAMS HOUSE, for the past 4 1/2 years helping homeless veterans with addiction. It takes sense and sensitivity to another man's feelings and the coherent ability to understand others pain and suffering to understand the depth of addiction in the Criminal Justice System. There is something more that is necessary that makes me a complete man. That something is love, compassion and an array of such subtle but vehement feelings it takes for a feeling of universal belonging and consideration for others. It takes the ability to make the right decision and to adherence to the truth and righteousness that is instilled in me. I am a leader! I can bring to the table the real experiences and the ability from over the past 49 years, only seen in Hollywood movies. I have the Experience, Strength and Hope that will change many lives.

Last Updated: 04/25/2017