Father forgives son who plotted family's murder, says it's the only way to heal

"20/20" Extra: Kent Whitaker petitioned for clemency for his son, saying he was "the single greatest victim" in the case.
4:40 | 02/23/18

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Transcript for Father forgives son who plotted family's murder, says it's the only way to heal
And we're hoping that one day that there will be a visit where we can actually sit down at the table together eat together and I think packet hiking. I haven't touched my sons since. Jane 2004. I am going to be so ecstatic. Going to be so grateful that that's open some doors that. Were closed even two months ago. Opportunities that didn't have presented themselves. I'm gonna be so grateful to the legal team who works so hard it. Crafting. The arguments. It makes so much sense but I guess relief and amazement and joy of it. This is going to be behind us this is a unique case I am the single greatest victim in this crime and nobody. Has to try to convince me of how awful this crime laws looked at every day. I hadn't I've never been ahead in the same guy. I understand the severity and nobody's denying. Its that he be. You be locked away for the rest of his natural life. And I think it's a win win situation for both the governor and the board to agree with us because. I understand Texas sixty her patient Texan. Nobody wants to be soft on crime and our governor and the board can be hard on crime. By giving him a life sentence which some would argue is much harder senate's then. Just going to sleep and not waking even if you're like me a law and order guy. There's some things that are right there are some things that are wrong and you need to stand up. To face them if he if you believe in our democracy at all. Yeah. That's what I've tried to do my opinion of the death penalty has. Changed over time. And I'm not going to stay fit. There's never. An appropriate time for that but I will say is that I believe that it is. In acted too often. And it's enacted. And dear so many cases. People who have been proven innocent after they have been executed. It's not something you can go back and take a Mulligan on its over. I just think that it's it's. Proceed too often looking into the future. What board hopes is that he will be allowed. An opportunity to live even if it is behind bars. He told me that he's ready for whatever comes next. That. Being on death row. Locked in yourself for 24 hours today. With. No human touch. No communal any thing. Instead it's he's done that for. But nine years now. Ten years. He says enough is enough he he can't be that. If there was anything that I would want to. The viewers to take away. From this beyond the all of the legal stuff on it. Its debt forgiveness. Is absolutely critical if you not to heal from your loss. It is the only way that you can get the bitterness out. And the bitterness is gonna stay there and it's going to affect your relationships and ways that you can't even see your recognize. But it's going to negatively in fact that affect them. I. I was able to forgive on the night of the shootings. Everyone involved long before a found out that my son was involved. And I think that was a gift that god gave me that night even though I didn't understand why he was doing it. But he gave that to me so that would be able to. Rebuild my relationship with Bart. Without the weight. Not having met and reached a complete forgiveness. Before I found out that it was him. If you don't forget. You're basically Jacqueline yourself to the event that you want to grow past.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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