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Buffalo Woman Adopts Three Children

5:30 PM, Nov 16, 2011   |    comments
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  • Lett family, with Hon. Margaret Szczur
  • Lett family, with Hon. Margaret Szczur
    

BUFFALO, NY - Due to the nature of the cases heard and the decisions made, things don't always have a happy ending in the downtown building which houses Erie County Family Court.

In fact, sometimes those decisions are downright heart wrenching according to the Hon. Margaret Szczur, who has served on the family court bench since 2005.

But on Tuesday, there was one of those happy occasions, which was nearly four years in the making.

"When you work in this building there's not a lot of special things, and not a lot of happy things and this is a very happy thing," the judge told Kevina Lett and her three newly adopted children Miracle, 7, Kaniah, 6, and Kevin,4.

The children are Lett's second cousins and she has been caring for them since January, 2008 when the court removed them from the care and custody of their biological mother.

According to the judge and a case worker, the mother was found to have been unfit because she neglected the children.

Beyond that, they would not comment on the circumstances of the case, nor would Ms. Lett.

Family Court records are sealed.

After the judge signed the final adoption papers, Ms. Lett told WGRZ-TV, "it was hard and it was a struggle, but they were my family and I just wanted them to stay with family, so I decided just to keep them. Being an adoptive foster parent is a blessing and more people should do it."

As the final adoption papers were being signed, Judge Szczur told Ms. Lett and the children, "you are now a forever family and no one can change that... congratulations," before friends and family broke out into thunderous applause.

Also applauding were staffers from Gateway-Longview, a children and family service agency which helped facilitate the adoptions along with the Erie County Department of Social Services.

"Days like this one make everything we do worthwhile," said a smiling Michelle Federowicz, Gateway-Longview's Director of Foster Care and Permanency services.

According to Federowicz, there are currently more than 1,000 children in Erie County in foster care, more than 100 of whom are waiting to be adopted.

If you are interested in adoption, follow these links to the Gateway-Longview Agency and the Erie County Department of Social Services.

Click on the video player to watch our story from 2 On Your Side Reporter Dave McKinley and Photojournalist Andy DeSantis.

Click here to read Dave McKinley's latest blogs.

WGRZ-TV, wgrz.com

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