Free concert planned to honor Amir Hekmati

Amir Hekmati

On Friday night, at the Mott Memorial Building Auditorium , a benefit concert will be held to honor Amir Hekmati. The free-will donation concert will feature the music from MCC Percussion Ensemble & EXCLAMATION!, Townes Osborn Miller, Carl Angelo, Rufus Ferguson, and Jack McDonald.The group has performed on NBC 25 Today.

The song â??I Will Fly (Amirâ??s Song)â?? will be performed . In a news release, organizers said it being staged to free Hekmati from his "unjust detention in Iranâ??s Evin prison".

The concert is sponsored by the Mott Community College Music Department and will begin at 7:00 P.M.For more information, to schedule interviews or other media coverage of this event, please contact Matt Packer at (810) 610â??3692.

Meanwhile, a petition asking for Secretary of State John Kerry to speak out on behalf of Amir Hekmati had 400 signatures earlier this month. Just one week after reached out to the Hekmati family and joined the fight for his freedom, the petition has reached nearly 10,000 signatures, garnering global support.

In a news release, Skip Traynor, from Alma, MI commented, â??As a former Marine, I was taught we do not leave our brothers behind.â??

Sarah Blakemore of Brooklyn, NY writes, â??This man fought for our country. We owe him our freedom; let's make sure he gets his.â??

Shreya Ghosh, Signapore, stated, â??No proper justice can be achieved behind closed doors.â??

The petition, a part of efforts to raise greater awareness of Amir Hekmatiâ??s imprisonment in Iran, written by his sister, Sarah Hekamti, reads:

My brother Amir Hekmati -- a loving son and uncle, American citizen and former U.S. Marine -- has been in Iranâ??s Evin Prison for almost two years, charged with being an American spy. But my brother was not, nor has he ever been, a spy.

On August 29, 2011, Amir disappeared while visiting our grandmother in Iran â?? the first time he had seen her since he was a young child and his first trip to Iran. We only discovered days later that he had been detained by Iranian intelligence forces.

In January, four months later, Amir was sentenced to death in a closed door trial. Later, Iranian courts lifted the death penalty because of insufficient evidence. But Amir is still in prison, in terrible conditions.

Since his death sentence was vacated, our family in Michigan hasnâ??t been allowed to talk to Amir at all â?? no letters, no phone calls, nothing. This means that Amir doesnâ??t know that our dad was recently diagnosed with terminal brain cancer and is fighting not only for his sonâ??s freedom, but for his own life, too.

Please join us in our fight to bring Amir home by signing this petition asking U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and the State Department to do everything they can to bring Amir home â?? to bring him back to the country he defended, to bring him back to the family that loves him, to bring him back to his father. Before it is too late.

You can view the petition at: