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Statement by Diane Boyd

Updated: Mar 31, 2021

I being a inmates wife started this journey seven years ago not knowing what to expect from writing a letter to a  man that was incarcerated in Alaska . I wrote that letter not ever thinking that I would hear from him . What my goal was to do is let him know someone was thinking about him hoping that would bring a smile to his face.

Several weeks later I received a letter from him and it was the most beautifully written letter I had ever read. He was so sincere and genuine telling me all about himself , Revealing to me why  he was in prison . So this was the start of our letter writing constantly for a year. About 5-6 months later  I set up a Securus account so I could put a voice to the words he had been writing me . From that first hello and that thirty minute conversation I knew he was someone I wanted to know and to be honest he had my heart racing and I didn't want that call to ever come to an end .

After many hours of conversation on the phone and writing letters about a year later we decided that I would come to visit him in Alaska. I was so unsure about this as having a relationship with someone incarcerated was not something I had ever done in my life before. He told me there was two women he wanted me to meet before I came to see him and one was the victims daughter and another woman who had been writing to him for over 20 years , He set up a time for me to call the friend that had been writing to him, and it was the most wonderful conversation ever. She and I  agreed we would meet me in Seward, and she would go to the prison with me for the first time. I felt very blessed. After visiting him several times flying back and forth from Washington to Alaska I moved there. I established myself there in the town of Seward and was able to visit my husband often.

In the mean while making plans I met this wonderful person by the name of Angela Hall and I got to know her very well  and she has taught me everything I needed to know about the the policies and procedures of the institution and how legislation works.

I married my husband Cordell Boyd, but I had no idea the hard times we would go through. My husband has been incarcerated for over 35 years since the age of 14 as a juvenile and then again when he was 18. He spent most of his adolescence in and out of McLaughlin Youth Facility. I knew upon marrying him he would have a chance for parole in 2018. It was the moment we had been waiting for all these years. I just knew in my heart he was probably going to get a set off date, but what I didn't know was that it was going to be a hard hit of ten years. I felt the parole board never even took into account all the things he had done to change his life; becoming a born again Christian in his early 20's, Meditations with the victims' daughters, 296 classes which include just to name a few are, Criminal Attitudes Program, SAMHSA Anger Management, Apprenticeship Of Culinary School, Mental Health Recovery, Helping to establish the Multi Faith Mod at Spring Creek. None of that meant anything to the parole board. it was all to do with the seriousness of the crime, They acted like they were judge, jury, and executioner. The most important aspect he has the utmost remorse for the crime he committed. People do not irecognlize that my husband is a victim of himself. We are so caught in our self righteous indignation that we don't take into account that inmates are going through traumatic experiences themselves.

For many years I kept my life a secret while living in Alaska, about being married to my husband. Today I have a voice and I am here to tell the world I have the most amazing husband in the world, and I will fight for his freedom as long as I am here, I will work diligently with others to change the laws regarding Juvenile  Justice Sentencing in the State of Alaska. 

Diane Boyd

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