CHICAGO (CBS) — Nevest Coleman has a 23 year gap in his resume, but that didn’t stop him from getting a job.
On Tuesday, Coleman received a call from the Chicago White Sox, informing him that he could get his old job back as a seasonal member of the Guaranteed Rate Field grounds crew, allowing the 48-year-old to restart a career that was interrupted by his 1994 arrest and incarceration for a rape and murder he did not commit.
In November, Coleman was released from prison, after recently analyzed DNA evidence cleared him and a co-defendant of the attack against Antwinica Bridgeman.
He interviewed with the Sox last week, after his childhood priest reached out to the team on Coleman’s behalf. Coleman had worked a variety of jobs, often more than one at a time, when he caught on with the Sox before the 1992 season.
Since stepping away from the decades of wrongful imprisonment, Coleman’s family has been in awe of his optimism.
“If I’m miserable, that means everybody else around me will be miserable,” he said. “So if I’m happy, everybody else will be happy. I don’t have time to be miserable, you know?”
In a statement the team said: “We’re grateful… justice has been carried out for Nevest… We’re thrilled that we have the opportunity to welcome him back to the White Sox Family.”
“I don’t have to depend on nobody no more; I can help myself now,” Coleman said.
During his time in jail, Coleman often saw old colleagues pulling the rain delay tarp across the field on TV. He bumped into some of them when officially accepting the job Tuesday, and said seeing them, in person, set him at ease.
Coleman is hoping to move up to full-time staff in the future.