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  • Reunion of mother with son is on track

    http://www.mlive.com/news/grpress/in...5744236460.xml


    Reunion of mother with son is on track


    Thursday, March 04, 2004

    By John Agar
    The Grand Rapids Press




    Three years after losing parental rights, Melissa Kucharski is on track to
    reunite with her son, now 6.


    In an "impossible case," it is a remarkable turn of events, Kent County Family
    Court Judge Patricia Gardner said Wednesday.

    The case has challenged Kucharski, her son's adoptive family, caseworkers,
    lawyers and judges -- and mostly, Jacob, who at some point will leave Debrah
    and John Wordhouses' Grand Rapids home for Kucharski's in Wayland.

    In a review hearing, Gardner said she was encouraged by Kucharski's progress.
    She also was pleased to hear that Jacob has been doing as well as can be
    expected under trying circumstances.

    Gardner said efforts would continue to place the boy permanently with
    Kucharski, 22, who lives with her fiance, Derrick Rademaker, and a younger son.
    Their progress will be reviewed in three months.

    While Gardner once found Kucharski an unfit mother, she said Kucharski "has
    done a very good job" and is putting her son's needs ahead of her own.
    Kucharski can begin unsupervised and extended visits with her son, including
    overnight stays.

    Gardner terminated Kucharski's parental rights in 2001 because of drug use and
    other problems. The state Court of Appeals affirmed that ruling, which led the
    Wordhouses to adopt him. Last year, the state Supreme Court overruled the
    termination, which voided the adoption.

    The high court told Gardner to work at reunifying Kucharski with Jacob. He has
    remained with the Wordhouses as a foster child since the ruling.

    The Wordhouses are adopting a 5-year-old daughter from China, and are trying to
    raise funds to cover significant costs.

    Two witnesses testified in Wednesday's hearing.

    Thalia Ferenc, a psychotherapist, said Kucharski was "very ready" for a home
    visit with her son. Jacob has been asking about the home, and wants to see it.

    Ferenc said their "relationship has continued to ripen, and is doing very well
    at this point. ... I think the interactions between Jacob and Mr. Rademaker are
    very comfortable and positive."

    She said, however, that Jacob should feel safe and comfortable before an
    overnight stay with Rademaker present.

    Rademaker has cooperated with caseworkers and counselors. He earlier raised
    concerns when he did not reveal he had outstanding warrants regarding an unpaid
    debt in Allegan County and a stolen television in North Carolina. Both the
    matters were resolved, but case workers were concerned he did not disclose the
    information.

    The judge three months ago said Rademaker showed a "history of untruthfulness,"
    but said Wednesday she was pleased with his progress.

    Ferenc said Jacob feels comfortable with the changes in his life, but it will
    become increasingly difficult "when it becomes more and more real for him."

    At some point, he will have to deal with grief.

    "Jacob is still attached to the Wordhouses ... and his foster brother as well,"
    said Jennifer Webb, a child-welfare specialist for Catholic Social Services.

    She said the boy attends kindergarten, and is "doing really well in school." He
    also gets along nicely with classmates.

    She said Jacob is comfortable with his mother, and "it seems like Jacob is kind
    of ready to move along here. He definitely wants to see (Kucharski's) house.
    He's very anxious about Derrick. He heard he plays soccer. ... His curiosity
    level has just really been piqued."

    Attorney Mark Van Slooten, representing Jacob, said: "I'm amazed. He's really
    inquisitive, very smart. I think, given the circumstances, he's doing really
    well."

    He said the Wordhouses are in a difficult situation, but focused on helping
    Jacob adapt.

    "I think they realize the issue here is reunification with Jacob and his
    mother, and they have been very supportive."

    Charles Clapp, Kucharski's attorney, said: "We're real happy with the
    progress."



    -------------------------
    A good friend will come and bail you out of jail . . . but, a true friend will
    be sitting next to you saying, "**** . . . that was fun!"
    -----Unknown

  • #2
    Reunion of mother with son is on track

    >Subject: Reunion of mother with son is on track
    From: [email protected]ospam (LilMtnCbn)Date: 3/5/04 6:06 AM Pacific Standard TimeMessage-id: <[email protected]>

    Top Posting:

    Ugh. Bad move to reinstate her parental rights.


    http://www.mlive.com/news/grpress/in...5744236460.xmlReunion of mother with son is on trackThursday, March 04, 2004By John AgarThe Grand Rapids PressThree years after losing parental rights, Melissa Kucharski is on track toreunite with her son, now 6.In an "impossible case," it is a remarkable turn of events, Kent CountyFamilyCourt Judge Patricia Gardner said Wednesday.The case has challenged Kucharski, her son's adoptive family, caseworkers,lawyers and judges -- and mostly, Jacob, who at some point will leave Debrahand John Wordhouses' Grand Rapids home for Kucharski's in Wayland.In a review hearing, Gardner said she was encouraged by Kucharski's progress.She also was pleased to hear that Jacob has been doing as well as can beexpected under trying circumstances.Gardner said efforts would continue to place the boy permanently withKucharski, 22, who lives with her fiance, Derrick Rademaker, and a youngerson.Their progress will be reviewed in three months.While Gardner once found Kucharski an unfit mother, she said Kucharski "hasdone a very good job" and is putting her son's needs ahead of her own.Kucharski can begin unsupervised and extended visits with her son, includingovernight stays.Gardner terminated Kucharski's parental rights in 2001 because of drug useandother problems. The state Court of Appeals affirmed that ruling, which ledtheWordhouses to adopt him. Last year, the state Supreme Court overruled thetermination, which voided the adoption.The high court told Gardner to work at reunifying Kucharski with Jacob. Hehasremained with the Wordhouses as a foster child since the ruling.The Wordhouses are adopting a 5-year-old daughter from China, and are tryingtoraise funds to cover significant costs.Two witnesses testified in Wednesday's hearing.Thalia Ferenc, a psychotherapist, said Kucharski was "very ready" for a homevisit with her son. Jacob has been asking about the home, and wants to seeit.Ferenc said their "relationship has continued to ripen, and is doing verywellat this point. ... I think the interactions between Jacob and Mr. Rademakerarevery comfortable and positive."She said, however, that Jacob should feel safe and comfortable before anovernight stay with Rademaker present.Rademaker has cooperated with caseworkers and counselors. He earlier raisedconcerns when he did not reveal he had outstanding warrants regarding anunpaiddebt in Allegan County and a stolen television in North Carolina. Both thematters were resolved, but case workers were concerned he did not disclosetheinformation.The judge three months ago said Rademaker showed a "history ofuntruthfulness,"but said Wednesday she was pleased with his progress.Ferenc said Jacob feels comfortable with the changes in his life, but it willbecome increasingly difficult "when it becomes more and more real for him."At some point, he will have to deal with grief."Jacob is still attached to the Wordhouses ... and his foster brother aswell,"said Jennifer Webb, a child-welfare specialist for Catholic Social Services.She said the boy attends kindergarten, and is "doing really well in school."Healso gets along nicely with classmates.She said Jacob is comfortable with his mother, and "it seems like Jacob iskindof ready to move along here. He definitely wants to see (Kucharski's) house.He's very anxious about Derrick. He heard he plays soccer. ... His curiositylevel has just really been piqued."Attorney Mark Van Slooten, representing Jacob, said: "I'm amazed. He's reallyinquisitive, very smart. I think, given the circumstances, he's doing reallywell."He said the Wordhouses are in a difficult situation, but focused on helpingJacob adapt."I think they realize the issue here is reunification with Jacob and hismother, and they have been very supportive."Charles Clapp, Kucharski's attorney, said: "We're real happy with theprogress."



    Diane Welfare, "she describes the US market as a "$US1.4 billion business in
    baby trafficking". ~~121603
    http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2003/...336884771.html


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