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Ex-Prisoners Find Redemption In Forestry Company

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Two New Mexico men are proving that America will always be a place of second chances.

Lawrence Jaramillo, 40, and Joshua Melendrez, 34, were both inmates at the Central New Mexico Correctional Facility just three years ago, according to ABC News.

Today, they’re business owners.

All Around Forestry LLC. Couldn't ask for a better group of guys to work with.

Posted by Lawrence Jaramillo on Tuesday, February 11, 2020

“I have a lot of family members that have been in and out of prison. Some of them keep going back. I would like them to see they could make it,” Jaramillo told ABC News. “We all have a chance.”

Upon being released, the two men founded All Around Forestry LLC, which specializes in wild land urban interface services.

They honed their skills through the correctional facility’s work camp program whereby the state taught specialized skills in forest prevention and firefighting. That’s when Jaramillo and Melendrez thought about life after incarceration.

“All we thought was, ‘Hey, let’s start a business and see what we can do. If we fail, we fail. If we don’t, awesome,’” Jaramillo told ABC News.

The duo posted videos to their social media pages of felling massive pines near cabins – jobs they’ve attained since founding their operation this past November.

They’re hoping to assist the state with future forest fires, according to ABC News.

With six current employees – all past inmates – they’re hoping to expand even more.

“There is life after prison, and that’s what I would like for them to take from this,” Jaramillo said to ABC News.

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