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Apr 18, 2010

(13 paragraphs, 4 links, 2 email addresses)  Below is an excerpt from Hank Skinner's account of March 24, 2010 - the day he was to die in a Texas execution chamber.  The United States Supreme Court issued a stay of execution within an hour before his scheduled death.  Skinner had pled for the justice system to give him an opportunity to test his DNA against evidence used to convict him, but his requests were denied.  Hopefully, Skinner can prove his innocence during the stay that the High Court granted.

Skinner relates what happened during his near-death experience.  He said being allowed to spend time with his daughters during the final visit that condemned men have was worth the agony of facing imminent execution.  He had not seen them or held them in his arms for many years, and he had never touched one of his children before enfolding her in his embrace during their heart-wrenching visit.  

Skinner wrote, "I really enjoyed my final visits, especially with my daughters. My oldest daughter, Natalie Jo, I have not held her since she was 5 or 6, not seen a photo of her since she was 11. My middle daughter, Kristen Nicole, I’ve never seen her in person, although I’d been in her presence when she was a kid.  It was very difficult for me to sit there and look at them as grown women."

After visits ended, as the clock ticked and prison guards readied the lethal injection room, Skinner was given last rites and another opportunity to say goodbye to loved ones by telephone.  Skinner's account in the excerpt below starts at the point when he completed those final personal calls.

Hank Skinner wrote:
I’d finished making all my calls but I ran over, past 5:00pm. So my last call was to my lawyer. Official news of the stay came at 5:40pm, the Sgt told me. So I was 20 minutes away from death – they kill you at 6:01pm. Doug told me, “hello? Hank? You have the most uncanny sense of timing of anyone I know.” I’m like “Yeah? Why is that?”; he said “Well…” and hesitated. The way I heard “well”… I thought he was gonna say “the Supreme Court just turned you down, I’m so sorry”; but instead he said “we just got word the Supreme Court granted you a stay and set the case for their conference calendar”.

He said some other stuff but I couldn’t hear it ‘cause I’d dropped the phone and was too busy whooping and hollering to hear anything. I kinda slid down the wall and caught the receiver up and thought I heard him say they’d be up to see me tomorrow. So I quickly hung up and asked to call my daughter Kristen so I could tell her and Natalie Jo, which I did. Kristen immediately started crying – I’m like “child, I swear. First you’re crying ‘cause I’m gonna die, now you’re crying ‘cause I’m gonna live?” She says “but Daddy, I’m so happy!” Well, Hell. I guess I couldn’t argue with that, huh.

Mentally though, I could not process this stay right away. I felt, physically, like a thousand pound weight was lifted off my chest. Then I felt so light and thought I was gonna float off the ground and my chest started hurting ‘cause my heart was beating so hard. I was trying to talk to Chaplain Hart and Lt Seitz, but I really couldn’t hear what they were saying because of the buzzing in my ears.

Skinner wrote that he was calm as he ate his last supper.  He felt that many people all over the world were praying for him, and he was able to stay strong even during that last day.  Skinner published a way for people to communicate with him while he waits for whatever comes next.

"If you e-mail me at h.w.skinner@gmail.com or hwskinner@yahoo.com my wife or pastor’s wife is who gets it, out there. They print it out and mail it to me." 

My mail is often prevented.  If you write to Hank Skinner, please send him a copy of the article that I wrestled for hours with cyberstalkers to publish.  Send him this link, please: 
HANK SKINNER'S LAST WISH - JUSTICE
http://freespeakblog.blogspot.com/2010/03/hank-skinners-last-wish-justice.html 

Tell Skinner I had to leave my home and face in-person stalkers who follow me to public libraries when I am prevented from using my own PC due to illegal takeovers. My home computers are placed on cyberstalkers' Intranet in order to prevent my activism for condemned prisoners like Skinner and others who suffer in the justice system.  I was prevented from uploading any articles  for Michael Sigala, the man who Texas executed on March 2, a few weeks before Skinner's planned death.  Whenever cyberstalkers wish, they prevent me from going online.  I have spent thousands of dollars I could not afford trying to end the illegal censorship, but they prevail.  I use online services at major networks to advocate to decriminalize mental illness and protest capital punishment and other human rights abuses. However, I face intense censorship.  Recently, I positioned the names of several condemned men who I advocate for in Twitter's "real-time search field," but none of my tweets appeared.

In the days leading up to Skinner's execution, my access to Internet services from my home computer was severed.  Tell Skinner I found the courage to leave home on March 23 to write an appeal for his life and add my voice to the many thousands of others that cried out against the injustice that his execution without DNA testing would have been.  Let him know that I did not try to put my Skinner article in a Care2 eCard, because my eCards for Thomas Arthur and Cameron Todd Willingham arrived to addressees blank on September 1, 2009 - all of my data had been stripped from the eCards to interfere with people learning about those cases.  Also, gMail went down the same day, which prevented me from sending information about the wrongful executions via email.  Most of all, please let Skinner know that he was right.  People were indeed praying for him as he said goodbye to his family, ate the final meal, and received last rites.  Assure Hank Skinner that Almighty God heard our prayers and granted him mercy.  The heart of the king is in God's hands.  We give Him all the praise for Supreme Court justices who stayed the executioner's needle, and Hank Skinner yet breathes.  God loves justice!

Hank Skinner's full account of his near-death experience is at this PrisonMovement link: 
"NEW HELL HOLE NEWS"
http://prisonmovement.wordpress.com/2010/04/18/new-hell-hole-news-23-by-hank-skinner/

Mary Neal
http://wrongfuldeathoflarryneal.com/

Assistance to the Incarcerated Mentally Ill
http://www.Care2.com/c2c/group/AIMI 


 

 
 
Content and comments expressed here are the opinions of Care2 users and not necessarily that of Care2.com or its affiliates.

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Mary Neal
, 5, 2 children
Atlanta, GA, USA
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