To My Daughter and Best Friend, Gina Muniz

by Grace Ortega
Grace Ortega speaks about her daughter, Gina Muniz, at a rally outside the prisons in Chowchilla, CaliforniaJesus saw she was getting tired and cure was not to be. Her family with tearful eyes watched her suffer and saw her smile fade. Although they loved her dearly they could not make her stay. Her name is Gina. I cry for my daughter every day.
The public needs to know there are more Ginas at CCWF who are dying every day. My daughter was denied medical treatment. She was warehoused, parked in a deathbed. I tried to get medical care for my daughter, but the doctors didnt care. I was scared for Gina. My heart was pounding telling Gina to hang in there. Five months passed and still no one cared.
A golden heart stopped beating. A beautiful daughter passed away. She will fight no more. I thank God at least I got her home. God broke our hearts to prove to us he only takes the best.
Some of you take matters into your own hands. I feel sorry for you on judgment day. Go ahead and hide behind Jim Jones Gates at CCWF. Youll remember me when you put your children to bed. How my heart is broken and Gina far away.
My granddaughter looks at me and wants to know why mommy had to pass away. I look at her and I dont know what to say. Mr. Governor, I know you will read my poem. One day you need to help these inmates dying every day. I sent you a certified letter about my daughters cancer treatment being denied and you never responded.
My daughter cried and told me, Mom I dont want to die. I told her were in America, they cant deny you medical treatment, those are your rights. I told her that was not going to happen. I hugged her and we cried. Ginas medical treatment was denied and Gina died on November 29, 2000.
We miss you my beautiful daughter and best friend…
[Because of Grace Ortega’s persistence and dedication to her daughter, Gina Muniz was granted a compassionate release by the Board of Prison Terms less than three days before her death. She died in her mothers home surrounded by her family. – Editors]