Gary Vitta

February 2, 2015


Honorable Stanley R. Chesler, U.S.D.J.

United States District Court

Frank Lautenberg U.S. Post Office & Courthouse

2 Federal Square

Newark, New Jersey 07102


RE:                   United States v. Gary Vitta

                        Crim. No. 15-01


Dear Judge Chesler:


            Please allow me to introduce myself.  My name is Pamela Vitta and I am the daughter of Gary Vitta.   Judge Chesler, I am not even quite sure where to even begin or what to say.  How can I possibly convey in one letter to you the impact my father has made on my life and explain to you the man he actually is?   How do I write down all the things he has done for my own friends and how he has changed so many of their lives?  This letter is just that- a letter, but for me it’s one of the hardest things I have ever had to do. 


For 29 years, this man has been by my side, teaching, guiding, and unconditionally loving me, while also remaining a tough and strong parent.  He was not one to enable us or make excuses for my sister and me when things went wrong or we were wrong.  He was someone who made sure we were always punished appropriately if we did something wrong (although I was not happy about that at times), and always taught us to always respect the law.  I can truly say he is an incredible father, and was and still is an amazing role model. I wouldn’t have changed one thing about him or the way my parents raised us because it has made me who I am today and I would like to think that I am a good and kind hearted person.


Through my life, my parents instilled upon me important life values and lessons but specifically, my father.  It was important to him that we be a family defined by strong morality, family tradition, and kindness.  And I truly believe that he has succeeded in doing this.  Every year for as long as I can remember, he made sure we kept our family traditions alive.  For our family, it was the simple traditions that made us happy and truly defined us.   It is our annual apple picking trip every fall followed by freshly baked cider donuts and apple cider.  It was making sure we all ate dinner together every night at the kitchen table while I was growing up. It’s watching George C. Scott’s version of a, “A Christmas Carol,” during the holidays while he recites every line Ebenezer Scrooge says.   It’s celebrating every one of my birthdays at L&B in Brooklyn with “squares” and spumoni, reminiscing about the prior year.  I know this may sound silly to you or too many others but to me, it means everything.   It’s the happiness that these small traditions bring to him and to all of us that make it so special.  I joke about how “annoying” he can be about his constant email reminders when these days approach but in all honestly, it wouldn’t be the same without his apple picking countdown email or his pre Scrooge movie planning two months in advance.  It’s what brings him happiness and amazingly, what now brings me happiness.   


My father is an honest and genuine man whose life work has been to help others.  He has raised a good family and has helped so many including my own friends.  I graduated from Quinnipiac University and now have a successful career.  I have been at my job for almost 8 years now and for that, I have my father to thank as well.   I was always expected to do my best and never too quit.  I was taught that things do not come easy in life and we have to work for everything we have.   Now, as an adult, I appreciate this more than I ever imagined I would and I am so thankful to have had parents like this.     As his daughter, I can’t explain to you what it feels like to see your parent suffer so immensely; not only my father but my mother as well.  The two people in this world that shielded me from as much pain and hurt as possible are now enduring it themselves yet I have no control over it.   This past year has been trying, to say the least.  As I sit here typing this letter to you, I have tears in my eyes that I am unable to hold back, because I just want this nightmare to end.   My dad isn’t the man I described above anymore; the man who sends “annoying” emails about when our next annual family outing is.    He is no longer the man who once laughed, smiled, and loved life.  I would do anything to see one of those emails pop up in my email box but instead there is nothing.     He has changed since this whole situation has occurred and for that, my heart breaks.   


My father isn’t perfect and neither is my family.  We have all made mistakes and we have always been taught that consequence is a part of life because it is and should be.  But, please Judge Chesler, I beg you to grant mercy on my father.  What he did was wrong but it was also a mistake.  I am hoping you can see the real man he is and try measure him by all the good he has done in his life as opposed to this.  I pray that you will grant leniency upon him.  I know he could do so much good for others within our community if you allow that to happen.   He has been helping a young child out every Monday with his studies and that is the only time I have heard my father come back to life this past year.  


He has learned a hard lesson and has been punishing himself every day since this happened.  He is consumed by embarrassment, shame, disappointment, and humiliation.   In his eyes, his reputation and his life’s work has been completely erased and tarnished.  Every single day for the past year, he has remorsefully cried to me.  The emotional despair he has endured is beyond what any man should go through and it has put a tremendous strain on my own life. I never thought there would come a point in my life where I would be the one to tell my father to be strong because “this does not define who he is.”  I never thought I would be the one to hold a grown man, let alone my father, as he weeps and disgraces himself in front of his own kid.   While this situation is something he is truly mortified over, as he should be, I can also tell you he is mortified by his lack of parental strength.   He has allowed his children and family to see him hit rock bottom and has been punishing himself in a way that is unexplainable through words.   I do not fault him for this though.  I know that everyone deals with their own personal issues differently and I will continue to stand by him and support him, even in these dark hours.   I have faith that he will come back and regain his purpose in life again.


  I hope to be engaged soon (I have been in a relationship for over 5 years now) but I can’t seem to find the happiness I so badly want in my own life because of what is happening to him.    He is going to be grandfather again and I will be a second time aunt but again, I just can’t seem to find it in me to be happy anymore.  There is a dark cloud over my head and has been there this entire year.  I would do anything to trade places with him so I do not have to see him hurt like this.  At least then, I can have my father back.  Although I am 29 years old, I still need him.  To be honest, I will always need him, no matter how old I get.  Judge Chesler, I do not know if you have children of your own but if you do, I hope you can understand this.  A child should never see their parent suffer like this and on the contrary, I suppose my parents should never have to see my sister and I suffer the way we have this past year.  I have felt so helpless since this all began and have gone so many nights thinking the absolute worst.  The thought of my dad not being here is unimaginable.  It is truly heartbreaking and devastating.   Please, please take this letter as my last attempt to try to save his life and my own, I suppose.    He is not a bad man; he is good man who made a bad mistake but more importantly, he absolutely recognizes that.  Regardless of this mistake, I am proud to be his daughter and can only hope that he can enjoy the time he has left with us.  He is a 63 year old man and at the end of the day, life is unpredictable and our time here isn’t forever.   Please do not take my father away from us anymore than he already has been.  He’s been nonexistent this past year and I just want him back.


 I am not sure if you are familiar with this prayer or not, but the serenity prayer has always been one of my favorites.  “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference. Living one day at a time; Enjoying one moment at a time; Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace; Taking, as He did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it; Trusting that He will make all things right if I surrender to His Will; That I may be reasonably happy in this life and supremely happy with Him Forever in the next.”   Each and every one of us faces our own judgment day and our own hardships.  For my father and our family, April 22nd is that day.    We do accept and admit what has happened and do not take it lightly.  We know we can’t change it but we do trust that you will make the right decision, whatever that decision may be.   So as one last plea, I beg you not to measure my father by the terrible mistake he made but instead try to find it in your heart to look at his life’s work as a parent, mentor, and great superintendent.         


Thank you for taking the time out to read this letter and your consideration.  I hope it gave you a tiny glimpse into his life and the person he really is.


Respectfully yours,   



Pamela Vitta

Daughter of Gary Vitta