Grandmother runs to her family after being released, thanks Trump and 'warrior angel' Kim
Alice Marie Johnson's life changed on Wednesday, and she has President Donald Trump and Kim Kardashian West to thank
Reporters captured the emotional moment when a grandmother reunited with her family after her life sentence was "commuted" by President Donald Trump.
Just hours after the president's announcement, 63-year-old Alice Marie Johnson is seen running towards her family in Aliceville, Alabama on Wednesday, reported CNN.
She was convicted in 1996 of conspiracy to possess cocaine and attempted possession of cocaine. She was then sentenced to life in prison.
Her daughter, Catina Johnson, said that when Johnson was sent to prison, she was seven months pregnant. Now, her own daughter is seven months pregnant, and cannot wait to meet her grandmother.
She was greeted by relatives who were eagerly waiting for her, with one of them holding a bunch of flowers for the free woman, according to the footage captured by local station WVTM-TV.
Johnson's case was brought before Trump by reality TV star Kim Kardashian, who has been fighting for the first-time drug offender's cause for the longest time.
After a highly personal plea by Kardashian in the Oval Office, the president elected to commute the grandmother's life sentence and set her free.
After hearing the news, Kardashian could not contain her excitement. She immediately took to Twitter and retweeted a story about Johnson, saying, "BEST NEWS EVER!!!!"
"So grateful to @realDonaldTrump, Jared Kushner & to everyone who has shown compassion & contributed countless hours to this important moment for Ms Alice Marie Johnson," she said in a follow-up message. "Her commutation is inspirational & gives hope to so many others who are also deserving of a second chance."
She said, "I hope to continue this important work by working together with organizations who have been fighting this fight for much longer than I have and deserve the recognition."
The reality TV star later called Alice Johnson and said that it "will forever be one of my best memories."
"Telling her for the first time and hearing her screams while crying together is a moment I will never forget," Kardashian tweeted.
In an interview with CNN, Johnson rejoiced, "I started screaming, and crying and jumping. I think I lost it for a moment."
"I want to tell Kim, my angel, that you never gave up on me. You never gave up your fight. You were relentless and it has paid off beautifully for me and my family on this day."
Johnson vowed to President Trump that she will never let him down for granting her a second chance at life. "I am going to make you proud that you gave me this second chance in life. And I will not disappoint the American public or the world that has so much faith in me," Johnson told CNN.
"It means that someone finally saw me, someone finally heard me, someone had mercy on me — and that was President Trump, and so I'm so thankful for him and what he's done."
She admitted that there were times she lost all hope, including the time when erstwhile President Obama denied her clemency. "That was a pretty rough day for me. But my daughter tells me I remind her of a phoenix," she said. "I guess in order to be a phoenix I had to rise above the ashes."
"I have not been in a car without handcuffs in almost 22 years," she said. "I am loving looking at just trees, looking at the cars and looking at birds and not looking at all these things through prison bars. This is so wonderful to me."
Last week, the White House shared a picture of Kardashian and Trump after they met at the Oval Office to discuss Johnson's case.
In the meeting, Kardashian, who was prepped by Johnson's attorneys, pleaded the president for clemency to be granted for the miserable great-grandmother.
While earlier reports claimed that it was a pardon, the White House later clarified in a statement that it was a "commutation" and that it was being bestowed on Johnson because she "accepted responsibility for her past behavior and has been a model prisoner over the past two decades."
"Despite receiving a life sentence, Alice worked hard to rehabilitate herself in prison, and act as a mentor to her fellow inmates," the White House statement said, noting that even her warden had said she "exhibited outstanding and exemplary work ethic."
The White House further stated, "While this Administration will always be very tough on crime, it believes that those who have paid their debt to society and worked hard to better themselves while in prison deserve a second chance."
Kim was majorly supported by the president's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, in pushing the case forward. Kushner is the one who set up a personal meeting between Trump and Kardashian.
After the said meeting, Kardashian had sent out a tweet that read, "I would like to thank President Trump for his time this afternoon. It is our hope that the President will grant clemency to Ms Alice Marie Johnson who is serving a life sentence for a first-time, non-violent drug offense."
A month before that, her husband, Kanye West, had praised Trump in a tweet that said, "You don't have to agree with Trump but the mob can't make me not love him. We are both dragon energy."
Later, Kanye posted a photo wearing a "Make America Great Again" hat personally signed by Trump. The president immediately retweeted the message and wrote, "Thank you Kanye, very cool!"
Trump praised Kanye once again in Michigan at a Republican rally.
"Kanye West gets it — when he sees African American unemployment is the lowest in history, you know, people are watching," Trump told his supporters.
During a speech to the National Rifle Association in the first week of May, Trump credited Kanye for helping to raise his profile among African Americans.
"Kanye West must have some power because you probably saw I doubled my African American poll numbers. We went from 11 to 22 in one week," Trump said at the NRA's annual conference in Texas.