There were heartbreaking scenes at Detroit airport yesterday as a 39-year-old father, who came to the US at the age of 10, was deported to Mexico because he is too old for DACA.
Jorge Garcia had to say goodbye to his family when he was forced out of America, a place he’s called home for 29 years, on Monday February 15.
You can watch the tearful farewells in footage captured at the scene:
The 39-year-old dad was solemn and silent as he held his wife Cindy and kissed their two children, who are 12 and 15, before being escorted to be deported by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents working on behalf of the Trump administration.
Garcia, whose wife is an American citizen, has no criminal record and was brought to the US as a young boy from Mexico by a relative.
The Michigan landscaper has raised two children, both as American citizens, who wept into his arms as their dad left their home country – on none other than Martin Luther King day.
The long fight to keep the Garcia family together ended in tears at Detroit Metro Airport.
Although Jorge was brought to Michigan when he was 10, Jorge was 2 years too old to take advantage of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that protects many other undocumented immigrants in his position.
Rather than wait to see what reforms are made, Immigration officials allowed him to spend a final Christmas with his family, but less than a month later came into his place of work on a national holiday to take Jorge away from his family, the Daily Mail reports.
My thoughts & prayers for the two @ICEgov agents who decided to work on #MLKDay. Our nation is diminished today thanks to your heartless dedication. One day, #JorgeGarcia will be w/his family again but you will have to live with what you've done.
May God have mercy on your souls. pic.twitter.com/ETGyJX0DVL
— Erik Shelley (@EWShelley) January 16, 2018
Cindy, his wife, has sworn to keep fighting to reunite the family as soon as possible, and with the help of Erik Shelley, set up a GoFundMe page to help pay for the legal proceedings to allow Jorge official immigrant status.
Cindy has been battling through the legal process since 2005, before which time Jorge had been living quietly in America, but his desire to live legally alerted the ICE to his presence.
But after their ‘first attorney filed the wrong paperwork’, according to Cindy, her husband was told to expect deportation in 2009.
The Obama administration granted Jorge several stays to allow the family more time to work out a permanent solution.
But now, under the strict regime of Trump’s immigration policy, their time is up.
As she spent her final minutes with her husband on Monday, the man’s wife blamed her heartache on President Trump.
She lamented with a direct message to the president:
You have destroyed my life. There’s nothing I can do about it. We get a new president and this is what he does, tears my family apart.
I hope everybody is happy. Look what it’s doing my children. These are the last 15 minutes of my husband’s time with his kids.
This devastating scene comes just days after Trump was reported to have called a number of countries from which immigrants come to the US ‘sh*tholes‘, including Haiti, El Salvador and African countries, in a private meeting.
…Which should hardly be surprising, given his track record:
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Cindy explained how the separation has impacted their children:
My husband has been in the United States since he was 10 years old and has lived in this country for more than 28 years. Our kids Soleil and Jorge Jr. are devastated by this whole situation.
They are seeing a psychiatrist. They cry every morning on their way to school.
She added, upon the cruel separation, ‘my husband will have to return to Mexico, a country he does not know’.
On Monday, protesters joined the family at the airport with scenes which read: ‘Stop tearing families apart’.
The agency did not respond to inquiries about Garcia’s case on Tuesday.