exonerated death row inmate glenn ford dies most intv nr _00025612.jpg
exonerated death row inmate glenn ford dies most intv nr _00025612.jpg
Now playing
03:09
Exonerated death row inmate dies a year after release
ny man wrongly convicted exonerated orig video _00001829.jpg
PHOTO: WPIX
ny man wrongly convicted exonerated orig video _00001829.jpg
Now playing
01:04
Watch the emotional moment a man gets his life back
man exonerated 8 years prison quadruple homicide dnt_00000007.jpg
PHOTO: Michigan Department of Corrections
man exonerated 8 years prison quadruple homicide dnt_00000007.jpg
Now playing
01:07
Detroit man exonerated after 8 years in prison
PHOTO: Bob Miller/The New York Times/Redux
Now playing
03:13
Freed death row inmate: Humor saved me from Satan
evexp death row inmate debra milke set free_00001027.jpg
PHOTO: KTVK
evexp death row inmate debra milke set free_00001027.jpg
Now playing
01:09
Woman freed after 22 years on death row
san antonio four rape case pkg _00033126.jpg
san antonio four rape case pkg _00033126.jpg
Now playing
03:52
Women freed from prison fight to clear their names
brother suicide note confess murder free dnt_00013111.jpg
PHOTO: KSNT
brother suicide note confess murder free dnt_00013111.jpg
Now playing
01:37
Suicide note frees brother from prison
81 year old man exonerated ny pkg_00001528.jpg
PHOTO: NY1
81 year old man exonerated ny pkg_00001528.jpg
Now playing
01:45
Man, 81, has murder conviction overturned
al death row inmate freed ray hinton _00001708.jpg
PHOTO: WAFF
al death row inmate freed ray hinton _00001708.jpg
Now playing
01:22
Man freed after three decades on death row
PHOTO: WOIO
Now playing
01:40
Hear exonerated man's touching words
cnn tonight howell north carolina dna convicts freed 30 years jail_00014713.jpg
cnn tonight howell north carolina dna convicts freed 30 years jail_00014713.jpg
Now playing
02:13
Men set free after 30 years in prison
dnt ca woman freed after 17 years_00004111.jpg
dnt ca woman freed after 17 years_00004111.jpg
Now playing
01:54
Jailed 17 years for murder, now free
vo sot sledge freed from jail after wrongly convicted_00002114.jpg
vo sot sledge freed from jail after wrongly convicted_00002114.jpg
Now playing
01:01
70-year-old man is free after he was wrongly convicted
sot lv death row stories kirk bloodsworth_00011209.jpg
sot lv death row stories kirk bloodsworth_00011209.jpg
Now playing
03:26
Former inmate speaks out for DNA testing

Story highlights

Former death row inmate Glenn Ford died Monday morning after battling lung cancer

He was exonerated last year and released from prison after nearly 30 years behind bars

Attorney: "Even after so many injustices had been heaped upon him, he focused on the future"

(CNN) —  

Freedom was short-lived for Glenn Ford, a Louisiana man who was exonerated last year after serving 30 years on death row for a crime he didn’t commit. He died from stage 4 lung cancer this week, 15 months after his release from prison.

Former death row inmate Glenn Ford died early Monday after battling stage 4 lung cancer.
Former death row inmate Glenn Ford died early Monday after battling stage 4 lung cancer.

Surrounded by friends and family, he died Monday while listening to one of his favorite songs, according to a statement on a website documenting Ford’s journey.

In an interview with CNN’s Brooke Baldwin, Ford’s attorney William Most said his client spent his last few months surrounded by people he loved and doing things that made him happy.

“Glenn was an inspirational person, and even after so many injustices had been heaped upon him, he focused on the future,” Most said.

Ford served 29 years, three months and five days in solitary confinement at the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola. He was falsely accused of murdering Shreveport jeweler Isadore Rozeman in 1983 and convicted by an all-white jury.

Someone confessed to police in 2014 that they knew the actual killer and Ford was eventually released. At the time, he was the longest serving death row inmate in the United States.

Given six to eight months to live, Ford traveled to California to see his children and grandchildren and often frequented festivals and live music venues in New Orleans, his lawyer said.

But the harsh realities of his past followed him even as he tried to move forward.

In an emotional interview with ABC’s “Nightline” in April, Ford met face to face with attorney A.M “Marty” Stroud III, the man who prosecuted him.

“I wasn’t a very good person at all,” Stroud said. “I apologize for that.”

Ford listened, but said he couldn’t accept the apology. “I’m sorry I can’t forgive you. I really am,” he said.

Stroud is now calling for the abolishment of the death penalty.

Ford used the little time he had as a free man to advocate for others, and to push for those responsible for his wrongful conviction to be held accountable, his attorney said.

“Glenn wanted justice in this country,” Most said, “and that means a system of accountability for innocent people being sent to jail or to death row.”