Bringing the Girls Home

So as some of you all may know my sister is in an ongoing battle to get her girls back from her ex-husband. This all began when my sister met up with her ex-husband at my home in Florida to drop the girls off with him for the summer. The agreement was that he would keep them the entire summer and they would go back when the school year was to begin. Well, Ricky decided he didn't want to bring the girls back. And the battle began. My sister was left helpless because at the time he would not give her his address or tell her what school they were in so she couldn't just show up and get them back. She tried doing things the "right" way and called a lawyer for advice. She set had a court date set and had to wait it out. At the first appearance in court, the judge ordered that since Ricky had already started the girls in school that they should stay so that they wouldn't have to leave in the middle of the school year. But, Ricky was to put the girls in a private school for the next semester and put Sariya (my youngest niece) into speech theory. Also, they were to meet at my house for every break in order to exchange the girls for visits. This was upsetting news but my sister sucked it up and would follow the judge’s orders until their next court appearance in June of this year.

The first visit showed that Ricky was not going to make this easy. He refused to meet my sister half way and she was forced to drive to Louisiana from Virginia in order to get the girls. This would be the case for every visit. My sister made that trip each time 23 hour drive straight without stopping so that she could get as much time as she could with the girls. Come the Christmas visit Ricky didn't want to let the girls go at the scheduled time and my sister had to wait in a Walgreens parking lot until Ricky was ready to give up the kids. She even called the police and had a report drawn for Ricky being in contempt of court. Spring break she made the trip again but this time brought the girls back home to Virginia so they could see all their old friends and go to all the places they loved. This was the last time my sister saw the girls.

They had their court date June 23rd in which Ricky had to drive to Virginia to attend. One would think this would be the perfect opportunity to bring the girls to see their mother again. But, nope! Ricky left them in Louisiana! At the court hearing after going back and forth without representation on either parties behalf the judge ordered joint custody because he could not determine either parent unfit. And he awarded sole physical custody to Ricky based off of the girls grades in school. Mind you Louisiana is not a very good or challenging school district. And the girls were coming from one of the highest ranking states in the country for education. So of course they're going to excel! They knew all the curriculum already.

But, now to the point of the fundraiser. My sister has filed an appeal to the decision and has sook representation. The lawyer she spoke with after hearing her case said that with the judge she had she absolutely needed to have a lawyer there. Which leads us here. The appeal date is set for August 29th which doesn't leave us a lot of time to come up with the retainer fee. So, we are asking all our friends and family for help. Anyone, who knows my sisters and the girls know that she is a great mom who loves the girls and only want what’s best for them. She was trying to be a good co-parent and let the girls visit their dad for the summer and it backfired. He took them with no intention of returning them. He had an opportunity to bring them to see their mom and out of spite left them at home. The girls have voiced that they’d rather live in Virginia with their mom but Ricky and his ego doesn't care. They went from having their own room and their own space. To sharing twin sized beds with kids they barely knew. Had a new mom forced upon them as they would get in trouble for calling Melissa her name instead of mom. It's a horrible situation and my sister deserves to have her girls back. Anything you can do to help will be greatly appreciated.

And as a lot of you may know my sister owns her own company called The Decal District and we found a few cards and letters from our mom with her handwriting on them so for anyone who donates $20 or more you will be getting a special mothers love shirt that we have come up with. I will post a picture of the shirts once we have the mock up! They will most like say have <3 mama in my mom’s handwriting  :)

We love you all!! Lets bring the girls home!!


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Rishaunda McKinney 
Jacksonville, FL
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