Weldon Long was back in a halfway house last month, but not as a client.
The ex-convict was at ComCor Inc. to talk with about two dozen of the community corrections agency's female clients about how to, as he says, "transform their lives."
Long started his speech by giving his Colorado Department of Corrections number - 57676. The number conveys instant respect among convicts because it shows he was an "old-timer" in prison - new prisoners now get numbers higher than 146500. Then, he told them his "inability to control myself" landed him in prison for the first time in 1987 and eventually cost him 13 years, including the first 10 years of his son's life.
"Nobody wants to be here. We have all promised ourselves it wouldn't happen again. I know what it feels like to promise your son that you wouldn't go to jail again and then call him from jail," Long told the women.
"I'm not here to preach to you; I'm here to share a couple of lessons. No matter how many times you have been knocked down, screwed over or had promises broken, it doesn't matter after today. Whatever got you here today, move beyond it."