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May 18

Written by: Diana West
Wednesday, May 18, 2011 7:21 AM 

Today is Michael Behenna's 28th birthday, his third birthday beind bars in prison at Ft. Leavenworth where he is serving a 15-year sentence for killing a known terrorist in self-defense in Iraq.

This is a national shame.

His parents Scott and Vicki Behenna write:

Though his spirits remain high, life in prison takes its toll on even the strongest of men and that includes our Michael who waits patiently for a decision on his appeal.

The truth is we really don’t know when such a decision will be handed down.  Michael's appeal was filed in December 2009, the government responded in July 2010, and the argument before the Army Court of Appeals occurred in December 2010. We have heard nothing since.  Michael's remarkable attitude remains upbeat even in the face of these long delays.  We credit his impressive resolve to the many supporters who have not left him behind and continually remind him of their support through letters, cards, books and magazine subscriptions.

Although some of you may wonder what an encouraging word or thought might mean to Michael, please know that you are his lifeline to the world.  Unlike the terrorists held at Guantanamo Bay, Michael has no access to the internet or any computer for that matter.  Through your cards and letters he at least gets a glimpse of what normal life is and can draw strength from your outstanding families and experiences.  We try to divert his daily Groundhog Day-like schedule and get him to focus on holidays and special events.  In that light, we would be very appreciative if Michael could be showered with birthday cards and letters from all of you.  What a powerful message to send to him.  You can send Michael your birthday well wishes to the following address:

                    Michael Behenna #87503

                    1300 N. Warehouse Road

                    Fort Leavenworth, KS  66027-2304

We wake every morning thinking this might be the day that the Appellate court rules on Michael's case and he can finally come home. In light of Bin Laden's death at the hands of the US military, we also hope that somehow the military might soften their stance and give clemency to our warriors incarcerated for killing Bin Laden's henchmen.  I still believe that somehow, some way, God will help our leaders see that Michael and the other Leavenworth10 soldiers deserve to be home with their families.

Thanks again for all your support as it is how Michael and our family survive each day.

Proud Parents of 1LT Michael Behenna

Scott and Vicki Behenna  

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