From deadbeat dad to ‘pops’
By Suzanne Werre
Underwood’s Paul Cabrera is like most fathers – happy to celebrate the upcoming Father’s Day this Sunday, celebrating, albeit long distance via Facetime, with his two daughters.
That wasn’t always the case, though, Paul admits. He’ll readily admit that for a lot of years, he was a lousy father, especially to one of his daughters, Daniella, who for several years thought he didn’t love her.
And she was pretty much right, said Paul, who has been manager of Underwood Farm Supply for the past three years. There was a long while he didn’t even believe she was his daughter, so he didn’t really have much love for the little girl.
Daniella is an adult now, married with one daughter and another child on the way, but it was when she was a senior in high school that she sent her dad, Paul, a Christmas card with a letter. A card and letter he received while he was in prison, serving two 12-year sentences and a six-year sentence concurrently, for things he had done while a member of a motorcycle club.
He was doing fine in prison, said Paul. Not much had really changed from his outside life – he was still using and selling drugs, he had a guard that was willing to bring in his drugs for him, and he was making plenty of money while behind bars. He was in no hurry to start rehabilitating to get an early release.
“I had done what I did and was happy not to be spending the rest of my life behind bars,” said Paul. “I had my hustle and was making money. Twelve years was nothing.”