RIP Flaco, In Memory of Edwin Alvarez | Michael McClain

rip flaco

Noah wrote a post on construction2style about how he found out his friend Flaco had passed called, Life is Precious.

His family read the letter and it meant a lot to them so he then went around the compound and asked a couple of guys if they’d want to write some stories about Flaco, as they all remembered him as such a great guy. So here is a letter from a fellow inmate named, Michael McClain, in memory of Flaco. 

RIP Flaco, In Memory of Edwin (Flaco) Alvarez


Even though we were very different from each other Flaco was one of the loyalist friends I’ve ever had. Many times in prison we are taught to stick with our “own kind.” Being African-American and over 45 years old you would think, Flaco and I did not have much in common. But Flaco had a heart of gold and besides usually referring to me as his “Grandpa” we made the most of a very difficult situation. Even when things were not going well for Flaco, in here, he always had a smile on his face. He could lose his phone, commissary, e-mail, property, and recreation privileges and he’d still be the same smiling Flaco.

He was soooooooooooooooo happy when Lebron went to the Lakers!

In Prison, you hear guys telling story after story about anything and everything. I can still see Flaco along with everyone else in the TV room, listening to one of those far-fetched stories. Flaco’s response would always be, “Were you there?” The storyteller would often say no they were not there, and Flaco’s response would be, “you can’t say that then,” in a very unique Flaco way (LOL). Everyone else would bust out laughing.

We went through the college program together and actually graduated at the same time. Some of the best times I’ve had in prison were studying for tests with him. He’d get so stressed out and I’d have to just tell him to relax, we got this. Once I got him to understand that it’s best to start studying for the test way before, the night before the test, everything worked out just fine (LOL)!

He was a much better soccer player than a basketball player, but he really thought he was Steph Curry and Clay Thompson in the flesh. Especially the night he hit like, 6 threes in one game. The only problem was that after that night I don’t think he made another 3-pointer for the rest of the season! It didn’t deter him from trying though (LOL)!

Flaco loved the sun and finding a way to tan during the summer was always one of his daily missions. Obviously, with me being African-American that REALLY wasn’t one of my priorities, but Flaco would always invite me anyway, “Mike, let’s go get some sun.” At first, I thought he was trying to be funny, but over time I realized he just wanted to hang out with his friend. It was hard to tell him no so I spent many summers walking around, A LOT DARKER, than normal for me! 🙂

Cameron, I don’t know if you remember me or not, but I’m the guy with that big beard you thought was James Harden. I hope and pray that you are doing alright. Hopefully these memories I’m sharing will help you truly understand what a special human being your father was. Hang in there and try to make good decisions in life.

-Michael McClain


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