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Mazz's Joe Lopez: solitude, forgiveness, reflection

Sadness, fear, anger, hate, hope, prayers and joy. These were just some of the strong emotions elicited by our recent exclusive interview with Mazz's Joe Lopez, who is now serving a 20-year prison sentence.

We heard from those angry and disappointed in Lopez, demanding that we stop writing about him. We heard from those with lots of ever-lasting love, hope and tears with prayers for

 his health and eventual freedom.

We thank everyone who has written, emailed and called on Pt. 1 (Mazz's Joe López breaks his silence
) of our interview. There is no question that the captivating life of Joe Lopez - singer, songwriter, bandleader, son, brother, husband, father, military veteran, felon - continues to fascinate and intrigue. The controversial details surrouinding his legal case always draws strong reactions - on all sides.

We take no official position here on his legal case. We're simply reporting the facts in this interview update on his stage of his life.

In this Pt 2 of correspondent Ramon Hernandez's Joe Lopez interview, Lopez looks back on his life, frankly discusses the solitude and isolation, the darkness and regrets, his hopes and prayers.

By Ramón Hernández

“Joe López is innocent and must be set free” is part of the opening sentence on www.ipetitions.com/petition/freedom4JoeLopez

This link, which we neglected to include in Pt 1, contains many of the facts, more explicit information and details the public wants to know.

While the singer-songwriter’s attorneys, his family and Christina Hernández’s Justice for Joe López organization are in the possession of all the inadmissible evidence in the form of numerous records and documents, the public is again reminded that to disclose any of this information could jeopardize the legal battle to set López free. The bottom line is that all evidence will prove his innocence.

The exclusive interview conducted with the former lead singer for Mazz was to bring his fans up to date on his state of health and how he is handling being locked up for a crime he did not commit.

“I have forgiven those who prosecuted me (and he goes on to list them),” López wrote in his most recent letter to this writer.

If he flashed a big smile in the pictures taken, it was because he was elated to be visited by someone outside his immediate family. He was so happy that he even started hamming it up for us. Those photographs were taken at the onset of our interview and before he got serious as he spoke about his case and before he got teary-eyed about missing his mother and the rest of his family.

Physically, the Grammy Award winning vocalist looked healthy. He is also in protective custody and not in the general population. He also does not have to share a cell and he is allowed to have a crock pot and buy groceries at the facilities commissary. This means he is able to make tacos and cook other favorite meals. He is also now working out. In addition, he is especially grateful to many of the Ramsey Unit’s staff.

“Remember to mention Captain T …, Lieutenant H… and Sergeant K …,” the 58-year-old vocalist insisted. Unfortunately, Warden Turrubiarte said not to list any prison staff or guards by name.

Continuing in his shout-out, López said, “And all West One Row, my friends from San Antonio and the (Rio Grande) valley that are here and especially Fred H.”

Next he started to rattle off a list of names that included Paulino



 

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Newsflash

(The Royal Jesters have been influential and instrumental not only in the history of Tex-Mex but also pop/rock music in Central Texas. The albums, the awards and the accolades are too many to list but here our correspondent Ramon Hernandez provides this update on Lawson's critical condition.)

Óscar Lesley Lawson has suffered a massive stroke and officials say he needs to survive major surgery to remove a blood clot in his brain.

UPDATE 1/7: No change in status - Bobby Galvan

UPDATE 1/6: According to cllose family friend Bobby Galvan, Lawson was given last rites Thursday morning. "I was at hospital this morning (01.06.11) with Oscar and his wife, Rosemary and their children when the priest gave him the last rights." However a decision to have surgery has not been made. His family has hopes that it will not be necessary.

According to Robert González, Lawson was in the shower on the morning of Wednesday, Jan. 5 when he experienced the stroke. 

Please check back for updates.

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