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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Fly Right Inc. Lands at WCCF

May 12th saw the Fly Right, Inc. ministry making an appearance at the Wilkinson County Correctional Facility. Though the weather didn't cooperate for the event to be held outdoors, Mr. Jim Harris made the best of it by bringing everything indoors, into the facility's gym.

As the prisoners filed into the gym, we were greeted by music, the sight of some RC aircraft, a few very nice motorcycles and the smiles of Jim Harris, his wife Fredia Harris, as well as volunteers Angela Pennock, Raul Arismendez, and Ryan Cook. Some of the prisoners had met them at a previous event, but even new introductions felt like they were reestablishing old friendships. After the first groups finished arriving and everyone was settled in, the show began.

Though indoors, Mr. Harris made the most of the limited space by flying the three small, remote controlled aircraft: a plane, a helicopter, and a quad-engine hovercraft. Before flying each one, he explained the basics of that particular craft, how it operates and some of his personal experiences with them. Some of the prisoners noticed that he spoke of things they could relate to, and they commented on it. Mr. Harris responded, "Just wait and I'll tell you the rest of the story." As a grand finale, Mr. Harris landed the helicopter on his wife's outstretched hand.

After he'd finished the aerial demonstration, Mr. Harris allowed the guys to pass around the plane and helicopter. As they were passing around the aircraft, Mr. Harris began recounting his story. It's a familiar story on many points to those who have been in the system. Peer pressure, trying to be cool, early drug use leading to other things. Finally it proceeded to crimes, being on the run from the law, becoming incarcerated... But Jim wanted to share what made his story different. When he was at his lowest, Jim found strength and salvation in Jesus Christ.

Jim wrapped his message up and invited the guys to split into groups with Fredia, Angela, Raul and Ryan. Each shared their own experiences as Christians and invited the men to take the step, make the decision and come to know Jesus as their savior, as well. It was an event I enjoyed and I really appreciated the volunteers -14 in all- for coming into the prison to spend time with us. On the way back to my housing unit I was running a little late, though it was a fortuitous thing. I got a chance to meet three more of the volunteers: Mr. Timothy Craddock, Mr. David Pose, and Ms. Cinnamon Falk. To all of you who visited- thank you.

On a final note, to anyone who reads this- Fly Right, Inc. needs a Spanish interpreter. They have some opportunities to reach those of the Latin community but need someone who can interpret while they are speaking. If you or someone you know might possibly be interested, you can contact them at: or by calling them at (877)369-3778

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About Steven

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Steven Farris is a prisoner who has been incarcerated since a month after his 16th birthday in 1998. Currently serving a life sentence without the possibility for parole, he is seeking to educate the public about the true nature of prison and the widespread and negative effects of the prison industrial complex. Steven has worked with both the National Prison Project of the ACLU, as well as the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund in furthering this effort.

You can contact him directly at:
Steven Farris #R5580
P.O. Box 1889
Woodville, MS 39669-1889

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