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Tuesday, November 20, 2018

10-02 Montanta Standard

Anti-death penalty panel Sunday in Butte, Anaconda

Unabomber's brother among speakers
A panel of anti-death penalty spokespersons — including the Unabomber's brother, David Kaczynski — will be featured in Butte and Anaconda on Sunday.

These speakers will tell their stories at 2 p.m. at the Anaconda Catholic Community Parish Center; and at 4 p.m. at the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, Western and Caledonia, Butte. Admission is free.

The panel members are on a statewide speaking tour called "Journey of Home … from Violence to Healing." The tour will be in Helena on Oct. 10, the World Day Against the Death Penalty.

"This tour is a part of our ongoing work to educate the public about why the death penalty is a bad public policy," said Jennifer Kirby, Montana Abolition Coalition coordinator.

Information about the panel members follows:
•  David Kaczynski read the Unabomber's manifesto in the newspaper, he recognized his brother's writing. David notified the FBI, but received assurances that his brother would get psychiatric help. The Justice Department's subsequent active pursuit of the death penalty was seen as a betrayal and started David on a journey to end the terrible death penalty system.
•  On April 19, 1995, Bud Welch's 23-year-old daughter, Julie, and 167 others were killed in the bomb blast in Oklahoma City. After months of agony, Bud began to question his desire for revenge. He remembered his daughter's statement that executions only taught children to hate. Bud began his journey to stop the cycle of violence and hate.
•  Shujaa Graham spent three years on California's death row after being framed for murder. Through his journey for freedom, he affirmed his innocence in spite of the system.
•  During a camping trip in Montana, Marietta Jaeger Lane's 7-year-old daughter, Susie, was kidnapped and later murdered. Despite her family's tragedy, she remains committed to her journey of forgiveness.
•  Terri Steinberg's son, Justin Wolfe, was sentenced to death by the state of Virginia, becoming their youngest resident on death row. Convinced he is innocent, Terri is on a journey to save her son's life.

Joining them are murder victim family members: Bill Pelke, Walt Everett, Art Laffin, Eddie Hicks, and Ron Carlson, exonorees George White, Curtis McCarty, Juan Melendez, Greg Wilhoit and Ron Keine, and death row family members Bill Babbitt and Delia Meyer-Perez.

For more info or for a full list of anti-death penalty presentations across the state, visit www.mtabolitionco.org and click on "Journey of Hope."