Last week, John Marek was Executed by the State of Florida

John Marek died last Wednesday due to lethal injection at the hands of the State of Florida.  His hard-working defense attorney -- who had filed last minute appeals to the Supreme Court trying to keep Marek alive -- didn't go to watch.  Who can blame him. 

It was only a couple of weeks ago that we posted on the eleventh hour efforts to save Marek's life.   There was evidence that he wasn't the killer in this case.  There were procedural concerns regarding recusal of a lower court judge.  There is always the bigger picture -- the controversy over the constitutionality of the death penalty as well as the all-too-often forgotten concept of mercy. 

No matter.  There was no reconsideration of Marek's case by any of the powers that be and the sentence of punishment by death was carried out.   On August 19, 2009, the U.S. Supreme Court denied Marek's application for a stay of execution so they could consider his legal arguments.   And, minutes before the execution, it was confirmed that the Governor of Florida would not come forward to stop things. 

John Marek's Death was not obviously horrific, as other lethal injection executions have been.

It is reported that John Marek did not twitch or convulse or otherwise evidence any improprieties during the 13 minutes it took him to die.  Of course, we've already discussed how the Florida drug combo actually paralyzes the body, so observers wouldn't know if Marek was alive and aware for most of those 13 minutes but unable to move or speak ... or if he was in pain.  Many argue that the lethal injection method of killing someone is easier on the observers but may be very cruel to the dying inmate. 

Marek's Last Meal and Last Words

John Marek had a lettuce, tomato, and bacon sandwich (mayo, wheat bread) with onion rings and french fries -- and a Dr. Pepper -- for his last meal.   His last words were of his Christian faith, as he spoke "Jesus remember us sinners," followed by the Lord's Prayer --- and it is always ironic to remember that Christ, too, suffered execution by the government those many years ago. 

Marek lived in a small Death Row cell for 26 years. 

May he, and his loved ones, and the loved ones of murder victim Adela Marie Simmons, -- and that hard-working defense attorney who tried so hard and so well -- all find peace. 

Last Words from Death Row Inmates

TruTV has published a collection of the last words uttered by those executed in various states across this country, just before they died. And while some may feel that these efforts of TruTV are sensational tabloid marketing, ghoulish and crass -- there is another argument to be made.

All too often, those living on Death Row are dehumanized. Perhaps dehumanizing here is a simple, human response to a situation where that individual is subject to death at the hands of the government - and therefore, at some level, by you and me. (We the people and all....)

However, when you read the words that these folk have said -- just minutes before they meet their Maker -- you get a good idea of who they were as people....

Some of them loved their families, and reached out to give them comfort.
Some asked for forgiveness, some spoke of the Lord.
A few said little at all.
Some of them seem bright, some of them seem dull.
Some took responsibility for their crimes, and some did not.

Photographs accompany the collection of statements. It's a site that is definitely worth your time to visit.

 
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