Faith

Heartbreaking Impact of Obama Commutation

They forgave the killer of their son with God's help — but the 44th president changed the sentence

As Barack Obama’s legacy is appropriately sledgehammered out of existence, it is important to highlight one of the many commutations the president signed in his final days in the Oval Office.

To be sure, some pardons and commutations are just and righteous. However, many are not. The one thing that gets lost in the piles and piles of names that nobody has heard of is that unjust clemency has an everlasting effect on the victims of violent crime and their families.

Army Pvt. Christopher Lee Fay was only 21 when he was shot and killed (photo: Fay family).

On Dec. 12, 1988, 21-year-old Army Pvt. Christopher Lee Fay was driving a cab near Fort Hood, Texas. He was active duty and trying to earn some extra money. Dwight J. Loving, a fellow Army soldier — private first class — got into Christopher Fay’s taxi.

As Fay drove the cab, he mentioned to Loving that he was headed home to Michigan the next day, to see his wife and nine-month-old son. After arriving at the destination, Loving robbed Fay of $30 — then shot him in the back of the head.

According to his own testimony, Loving watched the blood “gushing out” of the back of Fay’s head. He then shot him in the back of the head a second time.

The murderer confessed on videotape, and his confession was undisputed. He was sentenced to death following his court-martial.

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He has been in prison ever since.

Dwight J. Loving was sentenced to death. Then Obama stepped in.

The sentence was death — but Obama commuted the sentence to life in prison.

The military has not executed its own prisoners since 1961. That is not the point. Dwight Loving is a killer. He not only killed Christopher Fay in cold blood and was remorseless; he also murdered another man, Army Sergeant Bobby Sharbino — who was also driving a cab. Loving robbed him, made him lie down in the street, and shot him dead.

The sentence was death — but Obama commuted the sentence to life in prison.

Greg Fay is Christopher Fay’s brother. Greg Fay is also a U.S. Army veteran, a Christian, and a patriot. Greg Fay inquired as to why Loving’s death sentence was commuted to life, yet no explanation was given. There was absolutely no explainable reason for Obama’s action.

He did it without talking to Greg Fay, or any other member of the Fay family, or of the Sharbino family, for that matter.

The sentence was death — but Obama commuted the sentence to life in prison.

Obama just decided he would let Dwight Loving live, just in case the military decided to return to executions one day. Yet even if it didn’t execute any more prisoners, the commutation is a heartless, vile, and despicable act — particularly without communication with the families involved.

Related: Faith Is Central at President Trump’s Inauguration

Obama cared more about saving Dwight Loving’s life than Dwight Loving cared about anyone’s life. Obama cared more about Dwight Loving than he did about the lives that Loving’s brutal actions destroyed.

Ryan Fay — Christopher Fay’s brother — grew up without his father.

As it happens, I know Greg Fay and have been proud to call him my friend for over 10 years. Now he has a chance to tell the world how he feels about this revolting act of the worst president in the history of modern America.

“Loving gets to live. My brother does not. I struggle with whom to be more angry. I looked at most of the cases commuted and Loving’s was the only murder case I noted. Most others were drug cases. I wonder why he [Obama] chose to commute this one. Major Coates, Army JAG [judge advocate general] at the Pentagon, did not know the answer. When I told Ryan [Chris’s son, who was nine months old when his father was murdered, he was angry and asked me why. I couldn’t answer him. This decision by Obama has made an already impossible task for me even more difficult.”

“After 22 years of struggling, the Lord put on my heart to send a letter of forgiveness. After wanting to grow in my personal relationship with Jesus, I knew this was something I had to do.”

There is one last piece to this story. Greg Fay reported: “My mom has written Loving a letter and forgiven him for what he did. I am just not there yet.”

Kathleen Fay said, “After 22 years of struggling, the Lord put on my heart to send a letter of forgiveness. After wanting to grow in my personal relationship with Jesus, I knew this was something I had to do. I wanted so strongly to be obedient to God. After I put my letter in the mail, it was like a 50 lb. rock was lifted from my shoulders. I still have days that it seems like it was just yesterday. The first five years were the hardest. I could not let go of the fact that Chris died alone in that cab, but after growing my relationship with Jesus and reading my Bible, I discovered that Chris was indeed not alone when he died. Jesus was right there with him. The hurting never ends, but over time, it does soften.”

“Death of a loved one is always difficult, but when parents lose a child, the feeling is like the crushing of your heart and soul. The grief seems endless. Passing of time does soften the pain, but it never goes away completely. God has been my refuge and my rock.”

“In conclusion, after 22 years and a personal relationship with Jesus, I feel that He has put it on my heart to share my story. All I know is that if my story can reach one heart who hasn’t received Jesus as their Lord and Savior, it was well worth sharing and another good work from the loss of Chris.”

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