When my brother, Michael Pelletier, was 11 years old, he lost the use of his legs in a tractor accident on the family potato farm in Madawaska Maine, just below the Canadian border. I am one of nine original siblings and his older sister. It was heartbreaking to see my brother confined to a wheelchair while the rest of us played, but he never wanted our pity. Instead, Michael always tried to make the most of his situation. He learned to repair Bulova watches and make jewelry.
At some point, when Michael was a teenager, he tried marijuana and discovered the therapeutic benefits before there was any legitimate, scientific research, or “medical marijuana” propositions passed in any of the current 23 states that have legalized medicinal use of cannabis. The cannabis provided better relief than his prescription meds for his spinal injury at T-7 with transection of the cord.
In his younger years, Michael had a few prior arrests related to pot and later, at age 50 was caught importing marijuana from Canada into the U.S. He went to trial and received LIFE WITHOUT PAROLE based on the testimony of two co-defendants who received less time in exchange for their cooperation. Michael has already served over 10 years, but to make matters worse, he is incarcerated in a U.S. Penitentiary that houses the most dangerous felons, even though there was no violence in his case and he is confined to a wheelchair.
Even in prison, Michael overcame the most horrible of circumstances and taught himself to paint on canvas and has created incredibly beautiful pieces of art. To read more about his case and see his artwork please go to his page on the CAN-DO Foundation site - an organization that advocates "justice through clemency!"
Thank you for your support,Marlene Champagne
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