By Amy Silverman
By Olivia LaVecchia
By Monica Alonzo and Stephen Lemons
By Chris Parker
By Michael Lacey
By Weston Phippen
There was so much noise and so much shouting. I thought there was some mistake. I couldn't be here. I was only 17 and intimidated as hell. But then the reality of it hit me. This is the place I was going to have to spend the next 25 years of my life." Wade Arnold sat in the front seat of the car as it headed back to Phoenix and his parents' home.
Life has changed dramatically for him now. While in prison, he earned more than a full year of college credits. He became an excellent carpenter. He can drive any kind of truck. He is fully qualified to run computers and even to write computer programs.
His attitude is remarkably upbeat. If you didn't know where he was coming from, you would think he had just graduated from West Point.
I changed in there," Arnold said. You know what happened to me? One day, after I'd been at Florence for about a year, I realized something about my situation. I understood that nobody was going to come through the door and take me out. Prison became my reality. `I'm here,' I told myself. `There's no saving grace. I'm going to have to save myself.'" Moon drove the car slowly away from the prison. Neither man looked back.
MICHAEL JACKSON BROKE MY HEART HE CHANGE... v1-08-92