Photo by Keighla Exum on Unsplash

Overview:

Thanksgiving in prison is a thankful moment and a grateful event, but it is also a humbling and sad time filled with sorrow because we can’t be with our families. 

Thanksgiving in prison is a thankful moment and a grateful event, but it is also a humbling and sad time filled with sorrow because we can’t be with our families. 

At San Quentin, Thanksgiving brings well-cooked food and an out-of-the-ordinary desert — pecan pie. In the last few years, they served real turkey, honey-pineapple-glazed ham, well-prepared turkey stuffing, cranberry sauce, chocolate milk and a pecan pie. 

It was very tasty and brought a feeling of family togetherness. It’s almost as good as having Thanksgiving dinner with my father and brother because I’m not eating processed food. Real turkey, ham, stuffing, cranberry sauce, pecan pie! 

On the outside, my family celebrates Thanksgiving by drinking eggnog, cooking their Thanksgiving meal together, praying together, eating and watching sports.

It’s a peaceful and happy Gray Family Thanksgiving day. 

 
Disclaimer: The views in this article are those of the author. The Prison Journalism Project has verified the writer’s identity and basic facts such as the names of institutions mentioned. The work is lightly edited but has not been otherwise fact-checked.

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Derrick Gray

Derrick Gray is a writer incarcerated at San Quentin State Prison in California.