Jerry Sandusky in prison letter: ‘trying to get better’

mcarroll@centredaily.comAugust 6, 2013 

The celebrity gossip website TMZ has released two letters it claims were written from behind bars by convicted pedophile and former assistant Penn State football coach Jerry Sandusky.

The letters, dated May and June, may offer a glimpse into Sandusky’s daily routine and thought process as he sits in solitary confinement in a western Pennsylvania prison, serving what is essentially a life sentence.

It’s not clear to whom the letters were addressed, as TMZ blacked out the names of the recipients. When reached for comment, Joe Amendola, Sandusky’s trial attorney, said he could not verify whether Sandusky wrote the responses.

“I’m doing alright — up and down; battling hard,” Sandusky allegedly wrote in the letters obtained by TMZ.

Sandusky wrote in the May letter that his days consist of exercise, meditation, reading and writing. He said he’s been “quite confined.” Later adding, “it is very challenging.”

He doesn’t go into detail about his conviction for sexually abusing 10 young boys, sometimes on the Penn State campus. Sandusky, who is serving 30 to 60 years in state prison, has maintained his innocence.

In the letters, he wrote he is “trying to get better.”

“The battles will continue until the last whistle,” Sandusky wrote. “I’m grateful for the help and support. I must also fight my personal battles to learn from, grow from, and endure the circumstances.”

Sandusky at one point appears to express apprehension over the prospects of having his conviction overturned.

“An appeal is in process, but I don’t know what to think,” he wrote in the June letter. “I would feel better if we could reveal all the information and unfairness.”

Sandusky said he has been receiving “many letters of support and motivation,” and in his June letter made a vague mention of a “lady from Oregon” who has taken interest in his case and has been writing about it.

“Our challenge is to get some impact out of (her writing),” Sandusky wrote. “She is also working to get the support of some knowledgeable people who understand what she has done.”

Here is a complete transcript of both letters:

5/19

It was very kind of you to write me, and I appreciate it very much. Coaching at Penn State was an act of love and the many wonderful experiences have been a great reward in themselves.

I’ve been quite confined, always searching for purpose. For now, my main purpose is to endure, learn from, and grow from this experience. It is very challenging. I exercise, read, meditate, and do a lot of writing. I’ve written and continue to write my account of what has happened. God’s light has warmed me with many letters of support and motivation. My plan is to continue this battle until the last whistle blows. My hope is to serve even better purposes. Each day, my goal is to embrace each day as a gift. Never surrender except to God. Don’t let our circumstances get the best of us. Understand God’s presence and purpose. Remain as positive as possible. Exercise your mind, body and spirit. This, too, presents a challenge. I’m hanging in there. Give my best to your dad.

6/16

Thanks for your letter and offer. At some point I might need a book but I don’t right now. I’m doing alright — up and down; battling hard. An appeal is in process, but I don’t know what to think. I would feel better if we could reveal all the information and unfairness.

Today, I remembered my childhood, which took place about 20 miles from here. My dad and I were playing baseball, and he told me to choke up on the bat. I pulled it to my mouth and coughed on it. He knew he had a genius on his hands.

A lady from Oregon has written and excellent summary of what has happened. She ... an injustice and has made a great effort to learn more. Our challenge is to get some impact out of it. She is also working to get the support of some knowledgeable people who understand what she has done.

The battles will continue until the last whistle. I’m grateful for the help and support. I must also fight my personal battles to learn from, grow from, and endure the circumstances. I’m trying to get better.

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