Tyrone was a founding member of the Graterford Think Tank. He was in Lori Pompa's first class taught at Graterford almost ten years ago. He was the president of the Lifers society, and has been a part of many, many projects on the Inside to improve the quality of life for all people incarcerated there, and to better himself and stay connected to the outside world. For all these reasons, he was interviewed multiple times, and has appeared regularly in newspaper articles (find in The Philadelphia Weekly here) and even books ( that describe the lives of men and women serving life sentences. After thirty-six years of incarceration, he was facing the rest of his life still in Graterford. In Pennsylvania, a life sentence means a life without parole.
(Tyrone is pictured in the lower right corner)
In the Inside-Out context, Tyrone was a leader of the Think Tank. I met him when I was trained as an Inside-Out instructor two years ago. All of the Think Tank was incredibly welcoming, kind, and insightful. I experienced something very similar to the first Inside-Out class I was a part of, with a strong sense of welcome and community developing immediately. Tyrone was a central part of that feeling for me. He immediately welcomed me, the youngest member of the training group, and made me a part of the group.
Tyrone's life sentence has been commuted. He is now, again, a free member of society after more than three decades in prison. His release is part of national news because of the central role he has played for years in directing the national program. Now he will continue to do so, but now from a position on the national leadership group at Temple University, in the free world again.
I hope he will be sharing stories and updates with all of us. As he moves back into the larger world, I am wishing him all the best, and knowing that he will go far. All of us are better and more blessed to have him as a part of our free world and our national community.