Angeles County Jail
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Dave Bogna's Witness 55

Is this Your Man?

Los Angeles County JailSteel doors clanged threateningly along the barred corridors of Los Angeles County Jail. Our footsteps echoed coldly around us as we marched along. A large bunch of keys jangled in the Prison Officer's hand and the door of the Recreation block swung open. Together a sea of faces turned and fixed threateningly upon us. One particular face lit up in recognition. The guard turned to me and asked glumly, "Is this your man?" "I knew you would come, Cap," blurted out a stocky young man as he pushed his way through the crowd. "Get me into a quiet room away from all this noise. I can't go on this way! I've got to live differently!"

Unusual Sort of Friendship

Lemon GroveDave Bogna, whom I had met in the County Jail had first visited my home in Brawley when he was only sixteen years old. We had quickly struck up an unusual sort of friendship. This happy individual had a difficult path in life and one catastrophe after another seemed to punctuate his turbulent existence ending at the Los Angeles County Jail. What family he knew, was dashed in ruins one ominous day when his distraught father had shot his mother, then had taken his own life.✞

Paying the Price

Dave had witnessed this with his own eyes when he came in from high school. In a few fleeting moments, this teenager had lost both his parents. From that experience, Dave drifted further and further into trouble. In sheer desperation, he began taking drugs. Now in Jail he was paying the price. In that bare little side room off the "recreation tank," Dave knelt beside me. All was quiet but for his muffled sobbing. "I've got to live by the Bible, Cap" he whispered through his tears. "I've just got to!" Quietly we prayed and talked. Slowly his composure returned.✞

"Angeles County Jail"
by Ron Meacock © 2017

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