While Martín Esquivel-Hernández could not speak to his supporters directly in Pittsburgh, his words were still heard.

Esquivel-Hernández, a former Pittsburgh resident who had been in prison for nine months on charges related to undocumented immigration, was deported Tuesday.

At a protest Tuesday night in his honor, Christina Castillo, an organizer with the Thomas Merton Center, read aloud one of Esquivel-Hernández’s letters written from prison.

“Despite never having met every single one of you, please believe me when I say how grateful and in debt I am to all of you,” Esquivel-Hernández wrote. “There will never be enough magic words to thank you all for the moral support and the love you give me as human beings.”

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