The Story of Casey Mullen

Father Michael Decewicz - May 21, 2019

Casey Mullen is a defense attorney with a practice in Pittsburgh. But he was not always a successful man. Casey encountered many obstacles during his life and he has overcome them with grace and prayer.

Casey grew up in Lawrence and was afforded a good Catholic education by his parents. He admitted that when he was not even thirteen years old, he would meet with friends and drink the cheapest wine they could get, provided they had the money for an extra bottle for the buyer (who was over 21). The wine evolved into marijuana, then into cocaine and from there it consumed. Casey graduated and was accepted into Duquesne University, but by that time, his being was filled with the need and desire for a daily high. The need for euphoria led to an expensive habit that he could not fund; he decided to try his hand at selling drugs to make more money.

This is when Casey's life began to change. The first sale of drugs he attempted resulted in his arrest and subsequent imprisonment in the penitentiary. Casey did not want his mother to see him in handcuffs being led away by authority; the morning of his incarceration his father accompanied Casey to the courthouse. Casey's father told him that he would trade his life for Casey's; that he would gladly accept Casey's punishment for him. That is an example of the unconditional love that only a parent can show a child.

Casey realized that, while in prison, the disease of addiction continued even though he could not feed it. He would walk daily in the afternoon along with his thoughts and one day he realized that he was no longer thinking about his next fix. he had an epiphany that the drugs and alcohol did not have control in his life; he could survive without them.

Casey spent 26 months incarcerated and was released on parole. He wasn't sure what he really wanted to do; in the back of his mind he thought he wanted to help others like him who made mistakes through bad decisions. But Casey knew in reality that with a felony conviction on his record, law school would virtually be an impossibility.

However, with the help of a former teacher, Casey was re-admitted into Duquesne University and excelled in his studies. He still had the desire to become an attorney to help others and through the urging of his "village," he applied to law school. He was denied entrance three times and felt defeated. Casey shared his plight with his parole officer, who encouraged him to apply for a governor's pardon. Casey authored his own plea and sent it to the governor's office. In the meantime, Casey received a call that the dean of the law school at Duquesne had retired and a new dean meant new hope. Reluctantly, Casey reapplied and was accepted conditionally; he was relegated to studying in night school only. He accepted the condition with aplomb and ironically, the first class he was in was taught by the former dean who rejected his application three times.

Casey took the gifts God had given him and excelled in his studies at law school. He graduated with many awards and soon after, began his own practice. But he never forgets his roots; humility is practiced in his daily life. Casey knows that through the many prayers offered on his behalf and his own faith, God has gifted him with the grace needed to be in recovery for over 23 years.

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