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Russell Family Notes

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Richard Russell: The Passing of an Icon

Dear Subscribers,


It is with great sadness that we report the passing of Richard Lion Russell on Saturday, November 21. Richard had gone to the hospital a week earlier with abdominal pain. He was diagnosed with blood clots in the leg and lungs and other untreatable ailments, but was able to return home under hospice care. He spent his last days surrounded by family and visited by close friends.


"Freedom to Choose" Prison Experience

By Betsy Russell


After speaking to my father about my experience with the male inmates last weekend at Valley State Prison, he asked me to write about it. I told him I didn’t know if I could put into words the profound way these 150 men changed my life forever. 


I avoided my computer, the task too big, the emotions still lingering. How could I explain a feeling so deep and a connection with murderers so strong? How could I explain that after last weekend I know for sure that we are all the same. Only circumstances and choices separate us. It could have been my father in there, my son or my brother. I couldn’t let the opportunity escape me. Father knows best and I needed to find the words and write.