Fenster's family and former associates react to news of his homecoming

Danny Fenster
Posted at 7:11 PM, Nov 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-15 20:18:13-05

Just three days after beingsentenced to 11 years of hard labor in Myanmar on multiple charges including spreading fake news, visa breaches, and an unlawful association with an illegal group, Danny Fenster is a free man.

KATC spoke with Christiaan Mader, founder of The Current, a non-profit news organization Fenster briefly freelanced for. Mader says seeing something like this happen is surreal, but not unusual.

"I think if you ask most people who knew him even more, right," Mader said. "I mean I think the thing that most of us were thinking is that we feel awful for him and awful for his family."

Danny's father, Buddy Fenster, said this would be correct, but not in the way you'd expect.

"If Danny was okay, his spirits were fine, we were okay, we could deal with it, but on those times when we would speak to him and he was down, you know, and emotionally anxious, and you'd hang up," Fenster said. "You just, you just you can't you can't sleep, you can't eat, you just can't live with yourself knowing that he's suffering and there's nothing you can do about it."

He noted that a silver lining came about when he first spoke to his son right as he was boarding the plane for the States. Danny had told his father that he was excited to sleep on a real bed that was on the plane, especially after sleeping on a wooden pallet for 6 months.

"I said Danny you get on that bed and don't come up just when they tell you you've landed then you wake up," Fenster said.

He also said this would not be possible without help from former Ambassador to the U.N. Bill Richardson and Michigan Congressman Andy Levin, but also those championing the "Bring Danny Home" movement.

As for what Danny's father said his son can expect after his flight home?

"We're gonna feed him, you know, stuff him like a sausage."

Buddy Fenster said there are still questions the family would like to have answered, but for now, it seems like those will have to wait. In the meantime, they're just happy to have their son home.

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