In May of 2012 my dad was detained by police. After not returning home one night he called from a strange number to apologize -- my heart dropped. I held back tears, tried to control my trembling hands and begin to call for help. Every ringing tone worried me a little bit more as I waited for attorneys to answer. I was desperate to keep my family together. Occasionally I’d glimpse at my 7 year old sister still sound asleep, unaware. My dad would be detained for a full month after being processed by Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
In the following weeks I walked from attorney to attorney, visited the court, called family, church, my dad’s friends, paid bills, took the kids to practices, and picked them up from school, the sun never seemed to set. I can only imagine how my mom felt and my two little sisters, who asked for dad every day as they woke up and every night as they fell asleep. Eventually my dad was released while we fight his deportation.
Words will never be able to describe a month of separation and I cannot begin to imagine even one year away from dad. I need him, my mom needs him and -- most of all -- my younger sisters need him. Please stand with my family by signing to stop my dad’s deportation.
Mario Andrade is an honest man — a kind working father of 8-year-old Claudia Andrade (U.S citizen), 15-year-old Haziel Andrade, and 20-year-old Hareth Andrade (DACA approved). He is a devoted spouse and the bread winner in his household. Mario migrated from Bolivia in 2004 seeking a brighter future for his family. Since then, he has worked tirelessly to provide for his family and contribute to his community.
In May of 2012 a police officer pulled Mario over as he turned into his parking garage. Mario was taken into custody for driving under the influence and transferred to Immigration and Customs Enforcement for questioning. Then Mario was taken to Farmville detention center, where he spent close to a month awaiting his hearing. His family petitioned to release Mario with a bond providing evidence that Mario is by no means threat to society. After an outpouring of support and letters from community members, faith leaders, friends and family, Mario was able to receive bond.
Charges for driving under the influence were dismissed after Mario successfully completed an A.A. course. On September 16, 2013 he will face the judge to petition for Prosecutorial Discretion, but most importantly to be able to stay with his family in this nation he loves and where he has set roots.
No child should have to face being separated from his/her role model — and Mario is the rock and inspiration for his family. Young, athletic Claudia was selected as one of the top basketball players in the nation by the AAU (Amateur Athletic Union ) if you were to ask Claudia who her coach is, she will say, “my dad.” Scholarly Haziel was honored with the Presidential Award for Academic Excellence signed by President Obama — and if you ask her who she wrote her last essay about, she too will say, “my dad.” And determined Hareth was awarded the Washington Post’s Herblock Social Justice Advancement Scholarship and was recently invited to read an original poem in front of a national audience in Washington, D.C. If you were to ask Hareth who her role mode is, she will also say, “my dad.”
These bright, young girls prove what a great father Mario is. They need his support and love now more than ever, so I ask ICE Director John Morton, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and ICE Public Advocate Assistant Field Office, Hugh Safford to exercise prosecutorial discretion for Mario Andrade : A#202 399 267.