Timothy Cole's family happy to have closure

Published: Sep. 18, 2014 at 12:05 AM CDT|Updated: Sep. 18, 2014 at 12:58 AM CDT
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LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - More than 20 years after Texas Tech student Timothy Cole was wrongfully convicted of rape, his family and friends gathered to honor their friend and brother.

"It is what my mother wanted, to make sure that people in Lubbock never forgot about Tim," said Tim's brother Cory Session.

Session was the final speaker at Wednesday's ceremony to unveil Cole's statue.

"I will never forget that day when my mother walked the hallway and nearly had a nervous breakdown," he said. "I won't forget that, I can't, and that sticks with me. I know what she was going through, so many other mothers have gone through and continue to go through, so there is closure but this is an opening for the state of Texas and the legislature."

Tim and Cory's mom Ruby was a constant discussion point throughout the ceremony. She passed away last year, making the ceremony bittersweet for Cory, but she was praised for her perseverance, determination and persistence by every speaker.

"My mother was a constant drip on the stone of Texas and the slowest drip can wear down the mightiest stone and that's what she was," Session said. "She's always said Tim was her sacrificial lamb. She came to know why he lived, and why he walked this way. I think she's pleased, I'm sure she's pleased."

Session described the former teacher as forgiving as well.

"Just so you know the type of person my mother was, when Jerry Johnson was bench warranted for the exoneration, she told me, I hope they don't bring him out in prison uniform, and I said why not mother? She said to give him some dignity, and after he testified and admitted his guilt, the bailiff let him out and my mother reached over and told one of the bailiffs, bailiff? The bailiff said yes Miss Session? She said tell Mr. Johnson I said thank you, and she said thank you because he didn't have to do what he did. He didn't have to come forward, and I say thank you to Mr. Johnson also."

Judge Jim Bob Darnell of Lubbock County was also at the ceremony. He was the prosecutor who tried Timothy Cole's case.

"I am pleased that he came, but I will say this, as my mother said when we first met with him, privately, after that meeting she said he has a burden that he has to carry for the rest of his life," Session said. "But she knew he was just doing his job but he just got it wrong, which so many get it wrong, we all do things that are wrong, but this is one that you can't fix."

Session says he was able to have a private moment with the statue of Tim and is happy to see the finished product.

"A few nights ago when it was misting, I walked here, and I stood here, and I could just say well, you're back, bigger than ever," he said.

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