The Three Lives of Jeffrey Deskovic

Daily Kos


We sat on a bench facing what passes for a quadrangle on this miniature campus.  Me, the pampered law student with a wife, a dog, a moderately priced home in the suburbs.  Him, quiet but direct, reserved but optimistic.  His beard was gone, and he sat in a suit that fit him rather well, which I presumed he had purchased for the day's events.

It was the part of the day when the chill turned to cold, but I felt guilty about the idea of putting on a jacket: would it look like I was eager to leave?  Jeff asked how old the people playing soccer on the quad were.  I knew a few of them and pointed them out, identifying their ages, most between 23-29 years old.  Jeff looked covetous.  "I miss that," he told me as we watched my classmates on the grass.  "That's the life I wish I had.  I don't have a life.  That's the most difficult thing."  He pauses for a moment as the goalie at the far end of the field makes an easy stop and passes the ball off to Brett, a friend of mine.  "I'm looking to live my twenties.  If I do, at some point I may start to feel my age."  

His twenties were some of the 16 years Jeffrey Deskovic lost in Elmira Correctional Facility serving a life sentence for an unspeakable crime that he did not commit.