“I was forced to become the light, illuminating everything in sight.” Words uttered, plastered, and written on the pages of a book that speaks out to suffering individuals. As the world progressed and turned anew, Ricky Kidd was restrained within a facility where he fought to earn his release. Once wrongfully convicted – he is now a speaker, an author, and a figure of resoluteness.
At the age of 12, his mother was battling addiction, his father was out of the picture, he had to fend for himself in the streets, and he became a small-town drug dealer. Despite all the hurdles he faced, Ricky was living a non-violent lifestyle. So when in March 1997, he was sentenced to life imprisonment without parole, Ricky’s world disintegrated into mere smithereens. The once trustworthy Ricky became a man who would have to bear the false title of a murderer on his chest.
But, after endless contemplation, perseverance, and laborious strategizing, Ricky earned what was rightfully his – freedom. He became a role model who rose from the ashes and helped individuals like him through his words, poetry, and plays. The excerpt above is taken from “Vivid Expression: A Journey Inside The Mind of The Innocent,” a poetry book he wrote. A book that captures all his uncharted memories, feelings, and emotions.
He started to conduct workshops within the prison, worked on himself, and helped inmates. Ricky learned his oratory skills were his greatest assets. “Keep the main thing the main thing,” a mantra that he engraved within himself, helped him to take positive steps towards his release. He started a company, “Humble Standards,” in prison which sadly became a distant dream. Nonetheless, he pushed himself back up and, soon after his release, put his natural prowess into action.
Ricky has also written two plays: “Justice, Where Are You?” and “Gone In A Dash.” The former narrates a tale behind wrongful convictions; how the judicial system employs biases, racism, and blindspots. The latter showcases an emotional journey, unraveling the mysteries of life and embracing it as it is now before it is too late. These literary works are an open-window view into the world of an exoneree who has now decided to become better instead of bitter. Now, a speaker who narrates his story, Ricky unleashes the wrongs of what kept him imprisoned. After rigorous endurance,his voice has finally made its way all over the United States, even abroad to London, Canada, and Scotland, to speak up. His company “I Am Resilience” is a platform that speaks against the atrocities of the faulty justice system. He is a speaker, an activist, an author; a man who stood against all odds and showcased remarkable resilience. He is Ricky Kidd.