Ronald Callazo was once a very dedicated Firefighter at one of the busiest firehouses in the City of Philadelphia. At that time of his life he was thrilled to be in the position to serve and protect his fellow citizens.

Today at the age of 62, Ronnie stays dedicated to serving his community from his current home – behind bars. Ronnie is currently serving his 35th year behind bars after being sentenced to life without the chance of parole, after he killed the man who allegedly raped his wife in 1983.

His conviction for first degree murder was his first arrest in his entire life.

His Story:

Ronnie believes he had an average childhood, growing up in a single parent household with his mother and grandmother after his parents divorced when he was a small child. Despite being poor and not having his father in his life, Ronnie believes his circumstances groomed him to become a strong, independent young man. After graduating high school in 1973, he immediately went into the workforce until his arrest.

Ronnie understands the depth of the mistake he made and the impact it had on those around him. He knows that in our society we have laws for a reason, and he fully regrets handling the situation the way he did.  He wished he had made the decision to go to report the crime to the police, instead of taking a life, and ruining the lives of that man’s family, and his own. Ronnie came to fully understand the tragedy of losing a loved one to homicide after his father was found brutally beaten to death in 2005, a crime to this day, has seen no arrests.

His Service:

Ronnie has achieved numerous accomplishments including earning his Associates Degree in computers, and earning 33 credits towards a Bachelor’s Degree. He completed an intense three-month alcohol treatment program, as well as the, “Think for a Change” anger management program, and has attended a sign language course.

Even while incarcerated, Ronnie still makes an effort to improve himself, and give back to his community by dedicating his time to organizations, inside and outside of prison. He was a block representative for the Inmate General Welfare Committee, served on the executive board of the Commutation Committee and is currently an active member of the Lifers Organization. Some of the many organizations outside of the prison that Ronnie are active in include: The Muscular Dystrophy Fundraising Drive, The Annual Big Brother/Big Sister Runathon, and the Deborah Heart Foundation Fundraising Drive/Runathon.

Ronnie knows that the crime he committed was unacceptable. He believes that it was a crime of passion, and that the painful circumstances of the incident should be taken into account if he is ever to be considered for release. Ronnie’s ultimate dream is to be allowed the chance to live out the rest of his life outside of prison, making up for the time he lost with his family. Ronnie has children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.