I know we have never met. But if you have children of your own, you'll understand why I'm writing you today.
You see, the young handsome man in this photo is my son, Lt. Clint Lorance of the U.S. Army.
Like any mother, I was so scared that Clint would be hurt – or even killed – after he was deployed to Afghanistan.
Then on July 2, 2012, it almost happened.
Clint was sent to a "hot zone" on a dangerous mission to replace a lieutenant who had been injured when the Taliban attacked his platoon just days earlier.
He was warned to look for multiple riders on red motorcycles – known as "spotters" who alert the Taliban when they see U.S. troops. And every soldier was on edge. They all knew about the earlier ambush – and that just days before a U.S. soldier had been shot in the neck in this very village.
Suddenly a U.S. helicopter radioed in to Clint that a group of motorcycle riders was sitting outside of the village near a road that was used only by the Taliban.
As Clint confirmed a clear description of the enemy, a motorcycle charged toward the platoon so one of the soldiers asked permission to fire a warning shot. Clint said, "yes."
But the riders did not stop. Instead, they continued riding and broke through the troop's formation, jumped off the motorcycle, and headed right toward our troops. With only a split-second to make a decision, Clint ordered his marksman to fire. Two of the riders were killed. The other was captured in the village.
Meanwhile, two other Taliban members were killed by Clint's platoon and a second man captured trying to leave the village.
When Clint and his men arrived back at base, Clint ordered both of the prisoners to be tested for explosives residue. BOTH tested positive for residue on their hands, confirming Clint's suspicions that the motorcycle riders posed a threat.
Yet instead of imprisoning and interrogating these men, military intelligence at Brigade Headquarters released the men back into the wild.
Then they fired Clint as platoon leader.
And one year later, Clint was sitting in a military courtroom on trial for murder.
Five other members of Clint's platoon were also charged, including the marksman who had actually shot and killed the terrorists.
But all five were promised immunity if they would agree to testify against Clint.
Every one of the statements from these five soldiers changed from their initial statements. That's right, not one of their stories was the same as the account they gave on the day of the attack.
But Clint's account did not change.
And when asked for his only statement during the trial, he looked into the eyes of the jury and said, "I totally take all responsibility for my actions. I gave the order because I was the leader on the ground and perceived a hostile intent."
My friend, I'm proud that my son gave that order.
Because only weeks after the ambush on Clint's platoon, a motorcycle with two riders rode into a village where U.S. soldiers were patrolling and detonated explosives strapped to their cycle. That leader did not react as my son did – and American soldiers died.
But none of this mattered to the military court. Even though Clint never fired his weapon, he was found "guilty" and sentenced to 20 years in Fort Leavenworth Prison.
As soon as the verdict was read, Clint turned to us. He told his brother, "Be strong and promise me that you will take care of my Momma and Dad."
Then he took me by the shoulders and said, "Momma I can't leave here without knowing that you are okay."
It took every bit of strength I had to not cry. I did not want Clint to see me in tears as they took him from the courtroom. Instead I told him, "We will get through this. God loves to walk the dark hills with us."
Now, over three years later, I'm seeing just how much God is walking with us through this terrible time thanks to Major Bill Donahue of the United American Patriots. UAP helps provide legal defenses for soldiers like Clint who have been unjustly accused of crimes for making split-second decisions in the heat of combat.
Maj. Donahue is a Marine who survived three tours of duty in Vietnam – so he knows what it's like to make decisions behind enemy lines. And he knows you can't second-guess our young soldiers who have been trained to defend themselves in combat.
UAP is fighting to help Clint mount an appeal, a motion for mistrial AND secure a presidential pardon. But it's a costly process – and money our son doesn't have.
Clint was stripped of all pay when he was indicted. He was forced to sell his house. And he lost all 10 years of his Army pension.
All we can do now is rely on UAP and the big hearts of American patriots like you who support them and their mission.
UAP is a non-profit organization. They don't receive a dime of federal funding. And Maj. Donahue doesn't even take a salary for his work. He just wants to help soldiers.
If you can help with a tax-deductible gift of any amount, won't you please send it to UAP today to help them fight for my son?
While politically correct government officials are going to extreme measures to protect the "civil rights" of terrorists who want to destroy our country, soldiers like my son are sitting in prison for protecting our nation from these terrorists!
On behalf of every mother of a U.S. soldier, thank you for taking the time to read my letter and for whatever support you can send today.
Mrs. Anna Lorance
P.S. During a break in the trial, I walked outside to catch some air. The last soldier who had testified against Clint was standing on the sidewalk with tears running down his face. When he looked up at me he quickly dropped his head in shame. Clearly, he knows he helped the Obama Administration send an innocent soldier to prison. Thank you for helping UAP fight to bring him home!