Kimya Nolley: We’re celebrating as a family—because of you

By Kimya Nolley

John Nolley embraces his wife Kimya and son John Nolley III at his exoneration on October 3, 2018. Photo: Ron Jenkins.

This year, my husband John and I will be celebrating our third Christmas together—spending the day with our beautiful one-year-old son and visiting our family and loved ones—and it still feels like a dream.

This Christmas will be extra special. Although John was released from prison in 2016, this year, two decades after he was wrongfully convicted of a crime he didn’t commit, John was finally officially exonerated on the grounds of actual innocence thanks to the incredible team at the Innocence Project. That means that not only are we celebrating the holiday together, the weight of John’s wrongful conviction has finally been lifted from our family.

When the Innocence Project team asked if I would share our story with you this year, I jumped at the chance to send this message.

Your support helped free my husband, and I’m so grateful to you for believing in people like him.

Your support helped free my husband, and I’m so grateful to you for believing in people like him. When you donate, share stories on social media, tell your friends and families about the issue of wrongful convictions, or go to jury duty educated about the way the criminal justice system works—you’re part of a movement to ensure that what happened to our family will never happen to anyone else.

Thank you for bringing John home to us for the holidays.

Thank you for bringing John home to us for the holidays—for this year and for all the years to come.

From our family to yours,

Kimya Nolley

Photo of John Nolley and his granddaughters by Lisa Siegel.

Related: Kevin Bailey: My first Christmas home in nearly 30 years


  1. Melvina Calloway

    I pray someone can help me and my husband where he at Angola state prison they are so stupid we need a lot of help please he us free my husband to come home thank ms diggs

  2. Mikeisha Mitchell

    Amazing!! God bless you!

  3. J Grinnell

    Somehow the criminal justice system needs to be improved. I think of thosecwringly convicted, those wrongly declared innocent when the committed the crime, and especially those executed when they were truly innocent.

    And, in all this is consideration for the loved ones.

    Thanks to the Innocence Project for helping so many and making this a national issue.

  4. Lora Ruben

    So thankful that the Innocence Project exists to provide help to those who have been wrongfully accused of crimes. While there is nothing that can replace the time these individuals have lost, the Innocence Project is able to ensure that these individuals are able to be able to be freed from their wrongful imprisonment. To those who have had the opportunity to be released, enjoy your freedom and cherish the time with your family and loved ones.

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