By Dr. Hayes Elmore

Someone I had the privilege of working with was recently honored at the annual gala for an organization in Los Angeles called Program for Torture Victims (PTV), an organization providing medical, mental health, legal and a multitude of other services to people seeking asylum in the United States. During the gala he shared some of his story, and he and PTV gave permission for me to share it as well. I do so for many reasons, among them the hope and inspiration it gave me at a time when I really needed it and the possibility that it may provide the same for someone else. And also because we live in a time when people coming to this country seeking safety are vilified, when they are inhumanely bused from one state to another as political pawns, when they are harassed and when they die in the dozens on some days trying to enter this country. Each of them has a story that deserves to be told. This is but one of them: