Drew is Home!

Drew is home. Being home is comforting. Being pardoned would be justice. 

We continue to ask Governor Ralph Northam to pardon Drew. He is the only person in the world who has the power to right this wrong.  

For now we savor having our son home. For the first week it felt like one of my many dreams. Drew was home, we were talking and eating and then I would wake up and feel that awful sense of dread…it was just a dream. As I type this my body and mind have finally accepted that this is real. He is home.

As we drove away from the prison I reached up and rubbed Drew’s shoulder and arm. He let out a sigh and said he wasn’t used to being touched with kindness. Since coming home we hug daily and often. 

When we stopped for a burger it was so surreal for him, and us. Watching him choose from a menu and savor every bite of his burger and fries was nothing like the countless times we’ve stopped as a family for a simple meal together. This time was momentous.

While eating his burger Drew looked out of the window and commented that everything was so beautiful, so colorful, and like it was in high definition. He was seeing the colors of cars in a parking lot. His world had been so gray and colorless for years.

Every single moment of that day is seared into my heart and memory. Coming down the street to our home Drew asked if there had always been this many trees. The answer is yes. He had forgotten how colorful our front door is, a welcoming yellow. But the moment that tops every other was when he held our dog, Libbie for the first time in 875 days. The look on his face on this post says it all. Since then they have been nearly inseparable. I believe they comfort each other mutually. 

Experiencing simple pleasures with someone who has been deprived of them for years has made the most mundane everyday activities feel magical. 

Watching Drew sipping a cup of coffee, sitting on the deck enjoying the feel and smell of a light rain, walking through a grocery store that didn’t exist when he went to prison. It’s easy to forget how bountiful our selections are. Quite a contrast to ‘meat rock’ on a hard plastic tray covered in melted red jello, surrounded by overcooked cabbage and undercooked white rice.   

We now watch life through his eyes, feeling the intensity of the joy he experiences and likewise the immense pain as he relives memories. 

Thank you all for being with us and supporting a pardon for Drew. Each time someone signs, comments or shares on social media we are sending the governor the message that Drew deserves a pardon with his rights and reputation restored. 

Having Drew home is great. Being pardoned would finally be justice. 

With Gratitude, 

Judy and John Harrison… and of course, Libbie

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