But no one fell as fast as Stewart, the affable "Throwin' Swannanoan" from western North Carolina. He started using crack cocaine shortly after he left baseball in 1987, and the drug dominated his life for the better part of 20 years. Stewart pawned his most cherished belongings, ruined his relationships with his children and, finally, landed in a North Carolina prison for six years and eight months.
"He lost everything," says his older sister, Linda Banks. But Stewart did not let bitterness consume him. He embraced incarceration for what it was — his last, best chance.
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I wish him well.
His now-girlfriend actually moved from Seattle to North Carolina to be near him while he was still in prison. I hope her faith in him is rewarded.