Prison Chaplain Marshall Roberson had the gruesome duty of witnessing seven inmates being put to death for their crimes during the 1950s. As he finished his prayer, his amen was the signal for the executor to pull the switch releasing 2,300 volts of electricity to the hooded inmate. In Chaplain of Death Row, Marshall Roberson’s son Eddie tells the man’s life story as the chaplain at Tennessee’s main state prison. Chaplain of Death Row chronicles Marshall’s life from his childhood and the traumatic experience of his favorite uncle’s execution for murder in Georgia, to his encounters as a young pastor during the 1940s and 1950s in rural Tennessee, to his accidental meeting and longtime friendship with Tennessee Governor Frank Clement, to his service as prison chaplain where he witnessed the dramatic execution of seven men, and his service on the Tennessee Pardon and Parole Board. This memoir also recalls the years in which he experienced the loss of loved ones and how he provided spiritual leadership for his family. Finally, it recounts his continued service to God as he entered life in the “Fourth Quarter” as he turned 90 years old in 2011. Roberson narrates the story of Marshall, a man who used the God-given opportunities to spiritually counsel the men on death row as they awaited their fate. It tells of an ordinary man called by God to do extraordinary things and to minister to men from the governor to condemned convicts. Above all, Chaplain of Death Row is the account of a man’s faithfulness to God.
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