Adoptive dad heads to Haiti to bring son home - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Adoptive dad heads to Haiti to bring son home


JANESVILLE (WKOW) --  A Janesville father says he's doing what any father would do: going to get his son.

After two years, the paperwork was done, and the Banker family was just waiting on a visa when the earthquake hit.

Waiting was not an option for Shawn Banker.

Banker says, "His orphanage collapsed... he has no food or water. I'm going to do what any dad would do if his son was in need."

Shawn's going to Haiti to get his son, 16-year-old Nady. The earthquake left their world and Nady's turned literally upside down.

Banker says, "It was living hell to be honest with you, but.. the last time I was in Haiti I bought Nady a cell phone."

Three days after the earthquake, Nady called. His orphanage is in rubble, and more than 50 boys are sleeping outside in the courtyard of the orphanage. They ate for the first time since the earthquake yesterday.

Banker says, "He's begging me to come get him.. so that's what I'm doing."

The question remains: is heading to Haiti even feasible at this point? Officials working with international organizations say they don't recommend it, but since the Banker's adoption was so far along, Shawn might have a better chance.

Tom Di Filipo, the CEO of the Joint Council on International Children's Services, says, "A few children have been issued visas, those children had their adoptions finalized.. but short of a visa, the US government doesn't have a mechanism to let these kids in yet."

Banker flies into the Dominican Republic tonight. He will need to secure a visa for Nady. That's the final piece of the puzzle they've been waiting for.

Members of the Joint Council on International Children's Services have been petitioning the US government to allow a humanitarian parole for any child in the adoptive process. They believe that could happen.. in a matter of days.

Online Reporter: Teresa Mackin

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