Participant Testimonial: Mark Schuchardt

Mark Schuchardt is a changed man. After being incarcerated for over 20 years, Mark is ready to live the life of his dreams.

The Los Angeles, California, transplant firmly calls Southeast Oklahoma home. Early in his life, Mark left home to move to the city with friends. He said it was the moment when all his troubles began. Although his family is not from the area, Mark believes that relocating to Oklahoma City is the best option for his reintegration into society. With the help of his case manager at TEEM, Mark is actively searching for housing.

“Of my five incarcerations, this is the first time I have had such a clear and active reentry opportunity,” Mark said. “I have established a safety network of individuals who are thoroughly familiar with my baggage and challenges.”

Incarceration places heavy burdens on individuals and families. Mark said the hardest part of his time away was being separated from his loved ones. “I have been unavailable for family vacations, reunions, weddings, birthdays and anniversaries—I have become distanced from most of my family.” Mark is excited to meet his first grandchild—a bouncing baby boy. “I can’t wait to hold him,” Mark said. “He’s still a baby. Not even a year old yet!”