Lessons of Redemption is no ordinary book. It is an extraordinarily account of how one young man turned his life around after years of involvement in serious crime and drug dealing. Shird’s book tells of shootings, murder, drug dealing and his life behind bars in a federal prison. Shocking, fascinating and frightening, Shird’s book is a raw, uncensored glimpse into a way of life that has destroyed many urban communities in America.
Kevin Shird is originally from Baltimore, Maryland, in the United States. He got involved in crime at 16 and served almost 12 years in a federal prison where he reformed his life. Drawing on these experiences, he has become an advocate for young people and policy changes in America.
Shird currently lectures to students at colleges and universities in the US on substance abuse prevention, public health policy, incarceration, and re-entry to the community after imprisonment. In his lectures, he tells his personal story of redemption and how one can walk through fire and emerge on the other side to inspire others to live better lives.
With My Story, Elizabeth tells of the constant fear she endured every hour, her courageous determination to maintain hope, and how she devised a plan to manipulate her captors and convinced them to return to Utah, where she was rescued minutes after arriving. Smart explains how her faith helped her stay sane in the midst of a nightmare and how she found the strength to confront her captors at their trial and see that justice was served.
In the years after her rescue, Smart transformed from victim to advocate, traveling the country and working to educate, inspire and foster change. She has created a foundation to help prevent crimes against children and is a frequent public speaker. She and her husband, Matthew Gilmour, now have two children.