"You two! You two! You think you're friends? Have a nice trip? You'd get justice, wouldn't you? You know why? 'Cause you're white! And you, you wouldn't get nothing! No justice for you, boy! No justice for you! Justice for what?."
Ely Fisher is an African-American husband and father who was beaten to death by a racist American man and never received justice due to being portrayed as the one who started the fight.
"I thought I heard his ribs crack."
Ely Fisher was happily married to Rachel Fisher, with whom he had a son, Randall, who had a grandson, Jameel, after he died. Ely worked hard in a hardware store to earn money for his family, staying with the store for years. Unfortunately, one day, the manager let him go to replace him with the manager's son, who was American. Ely publically protested against this, reminding of his loyalty to the store and his time spent working there, saying the son didn't have what it takes to fill Ely's role. That night, after Ely leaves the grocery store where he purchased milk for him and his family, the son came out of an alley after a night of heavy drinking, demanding to know if Ely had any other smart comments for him. Ely apologized, saying he was just upset and he didn't really mean anything by what he said, but the man didn't listen an proceeded to beat Ely in the alley. To defend himself, Ely pushed the man off, and the man was thrown through a mirror. Thinking he was unconscious, Ely started to walk home, but the man got up and smashed Ely's head with a lead pipe, killing him instantly. The man was taken to a hospital, where in his disoriented state, he preached his bigotry to the nurse tending to him, saying they need to "protect" their "kind". The man was taken to trial for the murder, and the nurse wanted to come forward as a witness, personally speaking to presiding judge, Walter Merrick, in hopes she would do so. The judge dismissed her account, and the man was found not guilty and released. Rachel was so traumatized and overwhelmed by the verdict, she had a fatal heart attack, leaving Randall orphaned and growing up with his own aversion and bitterness to Americans. Ely never forgave the judge for his verdict and narrow-sightedness, and he couldn't cross over into The Light, even after his wife did. He somehow even came across Romano and his affiliates, hearing about how they wanted to stop Melinda from helping others cross over after they die.
"I don't know. I'm not sure. There's a lot I don't understand. They know about you. And not everybody is happy about what you do."
In the beginning of the episode, Ely is seen literally draining Judge Merrick of his life force during his ceremonial dedication by sucking it in, causing Merrick to collapse and be sent to the hospital; Ely even drained some of Melinda's soul to prevent her from intervening. At the hospital, Ely tried to finish, but he was interrupted by Melinda, and he disappeared. Melinda later sees him running around and furiously ranting at people walking in the town square over inequality of justice due to race, even thought they can't hear him, and even knocks a woman's groceries out of her hands. Melinda eventually finds out Ely's name, and she finds him in the town square at night. Ely refuses to relent from haunting and attacking the judge and hints about meeting Romano. Soon after, Melinda tracks down his son and grandson, hoping to get more information on his death. Randall bitterly explains his father's murder and his mother's death, and he turns to Jameel and points to where Ely worked and the alley he died in, squeezing Jameel's hand too hard out of emotion. Eventually, Melinda gets the two of them to come to her store, and Jameel sees Ely and spirit and starts a happy conversation with him. Melinda explains what's happening to Randall, and Randall says he won't believe it until he hears what happened the night his father died. Ely tells the attack to Jameel, who in turn tells it to Randall...only Randall responds saying he's heartbroken Ely never came to see him after he died when he was a kid after all the trouble and pain their family suffered. Melinda, Randall, and Ely resolve to expose the judge's lies to vindicate Ely once and for all. Melinda goes to hospital with Ely, and she comes across the nurse who wanted to come forward as a witness, insisting Melinda help her in return for what she did for Melinda before disappearing. Melinda and Ely then enter Merrick's room just as he's preparing to leave after being discharged. They tell him they know the truth and urge him to make things right and reveal what he did wrong. During the ceremony after the botched one preceding it, Merrick publically confesses to the withholding of the nurse being a witness which could've exonerated Ely from his false incriminations. With Ely, Melinda, Randall, and Jameel looking on, Merrick announces the plaque dedicated to him will instead be dedicated in Ely's name. Later that night, Ely speaks with Melinda and his descending family one last time before The Light appears to him. Before he crosses over, Melinda asks him about the spirits he mentioned that mean her harm. He first said he was mad and that he was just trying to scare her and that he doesn't know anything, but then he says they don't like what she does and they want to stop her. He then goes into the light and crosses over.
Behind the Scenes
He is portrayed by Giancarlo Esposito.
- Ely Fisher's spirit is the first to be revealed to be associated with Romano and his accomplices, who are targeting Melinda.