Brittney Griner’s Wife Opens Up About WNBA Star’s Detainment, Says She Felt ‘Hopeless’

Brittney Griner's wife has opened up about the "hopeless" experience she went through while her wife was detained in a Russian jail for 294 days.

Brittney Griner's wife Cherelle speaks out

Image via Getty/Ethan Miller

Brittney Griner's wife Cherelle speaks out

Brittney Griner’s wife, Cherelle Griner, has opened up about the “hopeless” experience she went through while her wife was held captive in a Russian jail for 294 days. Griner, who was arrested in Moscow in February over the possession of hash oil cartridges, was freed in a prisoner swap that involved the release of convicted Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout

“We were both just instantly crying,” Cherelle told People about being reunited with her wife. “I was standing there full of tears and someone ran over and handed me a handkerchief. I definitely needed it.”

Cherelle also described how “hopeless” she felt during her wife’s incarceration. “I was hopeless a lot of days,” she explained. “You try and stay grounded, but I’m human. Still, I would never completely give up hope on my wife’s life.”

“Saying the names of Americans wrongfully detained plays a big piece in getting them home,” she continued. “We have to say their names, we have to write them, we have to keep pressure on our government to do hard things in negotiations.”

Meanwhile, Griner recently shared her first statement since being released “The last 10 months have been a battle at every turn,” she wrote on Instagram. “I dug deep to keep my faith and it was the love from so many of you that helped keep me going. From the bottom of my heart, thank you to everyone for your help.”

Griner went on to thank everyone personally involved in securing freedom, including Cherelle and the Biden Administration. She also announced her intentions to play for the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury this upcoming season.

“President Biden, you brought me home and I know you are committed to bringing Paul Whelan and all Americans home too,” Griner continued. “I will use my platform to do whatever I can to help you. I also encourage everyone that played a part in bringing me home to continue their efforts to bring all Americans home. Every family deserves to be whole.”

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