Daniel Chandler

I am 29 years old serving a 30 year sentence for selling drugs. For most of my life, I
didn’t believe in God. I never thought I needed him. The only time I turned to God was when I was in trouble. Then it was only in hopes of getting myself out of the bind I was in.

When I was 18 years old, I had everything a man should want in life--a good job,
beautiful wife, son on the way, and family that loved me. Something was missing and I wasn’t satisfied. I started selling drugs. I also had been doing drugs. This started a downward spiral that landed me in prison.

After my wife left me, I got together with my old high school sweetheart and she had a
baby girl. My daughter was the most beautiful thing in the world. A lot of drinking and drugs in a Godless life soon took its toll. An incident with a 12 gauge shotgun took place and I was on the run. When they got me, I was charged with everything from aggravated assault to drug possession.

In Lubbock County Jail, I got baptized and prayed daily. They offered me 70 years!
When I signed for my time, I stopped praying and said it was a good lawyer that got me five years.

While in prison, I joined a gang and all we did was talk about getting out and selling
drugs. We were going to be rich!

I was released from prison May 1, 2006 and quickly started selling meth. My gang gave
me rank for the first time, and I felt like I was somebody important. Less than six months later, on October 17, 2006, I got busted.

Here I go praying again! I ended up with two years and went back on a violation! That’s
the good lawyer again, right?

Back in prison, I devoted all my time to the gang. I rose to the top and brought a lot of
attention to myself! They confirmed me and locked me up in seg. I wasn’t worried about it because I was long way discharging. I couldn’t wait to take this all to the free world.

January 19, 2010, I was free and clear. No parole to answer to or anything. I was a high-ranking gang member with plans! My family tried to help me. My son was seven years old. I didn’t have time for them. God was definitely not part of my life. I didn’t believe in God. 

There was nothing holding me back now so I started selling meth. I was even cooking it.
I was shooting up as well. There were plenty of drugs and money. I had the females from our gang hanging around, and when one moved on another moved in. People in the gang were starting to hold their hand out. I was expected to help my “bro’s.” I was greedy and was not making many friends. Feelings became involved with certain females and that caused problems, too! The gang was turning on me fast. July 2010, I laid it down.

Now, I was on my own. Things started happening that opened my eyes. Being in prison
and part of a “white gang,” I had been taught to hate. My choices were made for me.

At one point, I was in Lamesa and on the way to Odessa. My girlfriend had to be in
court. I was out of gas, no food, no smokes, nothing. I’m standing in front of “Stripes” asking every white person who walks by for help. You would have thought I had the plague! Finally, a black man walks up to me and asks if I’m okay. I told him what was going on. He put $20.00 gas in my car, gave me a pack of smokes, and bought us something to eat! Here I am, WHITE, in a tank top, prison tats showing, and a black man helped me. All he said was “God bless you!” And when I turned to thank him, he was driving away! This really made me think.

I got pretty strung out, sticking a needle in my arm six times a day. I did a lot of things
I’m not proud of. April 28, 2011, my little stretch was ended. I was locked back up looking at a lot of time.

I went to church and my friend Junior was preaching. Everything he said seemed to be
aimed at me. I broke down in tears and begged God to forgive me. This was in May, 2011. I asked God to come into my life.

An old friend came back into my life, and she has helped me more than she could ever
know (I love you, Jen!!). I made amends with my family. And, most of all, I am happy. I know with God in my life, I will have another shot at life. I plan on going into the ministry and helping others. If I can do it, anyone can. I come up for parole in October, 2014. I know when I get out, this time I can make it because God has changed me.

Daniel Chandler
6-3-12 – at Middleton Unit Ad Seg

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