A SOLDIER'S REDEMPTION
A SOLDIER'S REDEMPTION
by Lorenzo Louden
A Soldier's Redemption is a true, candid, no-holds-barred story of infamous former gangster disciple Lorenzo Louden, a.k.a. "Shorty G." His story immerses you in the notorious world of gangs, taking you on a bone-chilling ride through the streets of 1970s Chicago. While serving 17 years behind bars, his militant rule of the underworld expanded from the streets to the prisons until a spiritual encounter directed his journey out of the darkness onto a miraculous path of purpose and possibility.
Read an Excerpt:
For a long time, I figured any book I ever wrote about my life would have to be written from my cell. In those days, I was known to the State of Illinois by a number, and to Folks in the Family as Shorty G. Plenty of the Folks are still doing their time. Plenty of them are still out there in their madness. Some of them are dead. Thanks to God’s grace and forgiveness, I was given a second chance.
Life sure does take unexpected turns sometimes, and that’s how I come to be telling you my story as a free man. And, when I talk about being free, I’m not just talking about being free from state prison. There are all kinds of ways for a man to be locked up in chains. But, I don’t want to get ahead of myself here…
I was born in Little Rock, Arkansas, but my story really starts when I was a four-year-old kid, living in Chicago with my mother and my baby sister, Grenada Janelle (Jan). My mother was an elegant, petite lady, who stood about five-foot-two or three. Her style was real flashy and she liked nice things.
I never knew my father at all. I was told he was in the military, but older people kept secrets in those days, so I never knew anything more than that. Mom never married the man, and had no contact with him. Looking back on my like a kid, it’s easy to understand how I ended up where I did.
The building where we lived was real noisy, and there were always people running up and down the hallways. Day and night, you could hear them fighting, hollering, and carrying on. I don’t remember other kids being around—just a lot of grownups and a lot of chaos. There was no way to feel safe.
We had an itty-bitty efficiency apartment. It was one big room with a kitchenette, a couch, and a bed that folded into the wall. I slept on the couch, and my sister slept with Mom in the bed. We lived above a tavern on a busy street, so there was always traffic. At nighttime, I liked to stand at the window, listening to the car horns and looking at the lights and the people down below. People would be having fun—drinking, laughing and telling stories. That looked to me like a good time.
About the Author:
Lorenzo Louden was born in Little Rock, Arkansas, but grew up on the notorious streets of the West Side of Chicago, Illinois, an area known as K-Town. He was raised in the foster care system until he was 14 years old. Lorenzo grew up on the streets and endured a lot of hardship as a young teenager. As an adult, he believed that his past did not have to dictate his future, so he strived to be the best he could be. During a 17-year stay, from 1977 to 1994, courtesy of the Illinois prison system, he gained 4 degrees, including a bachelor's degree in business. In 2005 Lorenzo started a non-profit organization called Tower of Refuge, dedicated to aiding and assisting returning citizens. For the 10 years following, he and his team worked diligently to ensure that these individuals had the services and support they needed to make a smooth transition back to society. The organization had a 96% success rating over that 10-year period. Lorenzo, a noted motivational speaker, who has positively influenced the lives of hundreds of detainees, is also the published author of "A Soldier's Redemption: The Life of Gangster Shorty G," an autobiographical account of his life as a gangster.
CEO of Black Chamber of Commerce of Illinois in Bloomington, IL; granted a contractual employee position for the Illinois Department of Corrections for mentoring and educating individuals incarcerated prior to their release; current owner of Illini Construction & Waterproofing, LLC; a father to three wonderful young adults that are contributing hugely to the societies that they are currently residing; loving brother, uncle, and friend to all who he has encountered.
Q&A With the Author
What did you enjoy most about writing this book?
I really enjoyed writing this book because it was like a purge, me releasing all this stuff that was subconsciously in me that I really didn’t know was there. During the writing process my ghost writer and talked over the phone 3 days a week for two hours a day, for 6 months. She brought so much out of me that, and I cry and laughed doing the writing of this book. At the end of the writing process, I felt a weight lifted off me.
Do you have any other books you are working on that you can tell us about?
No, not at the moment.
Can you tell us about what you have planned for the future?
I do plan to write the second chapter of my life so my readers will know where I am in life.
Also, there is a finished screenplay, that has been written from the book.
How long have you been writing?
That was my first book.
Anything more you would like to say to your readers and fans?
To all my readers and fans; if you so choose to go out and purchase my book, or download the Kindle version please leave reviews of what you thought of what you read. I would really appreciate it. Thank you very much.
Lorenzo Louden will award a $10 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner.
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