Haitian orphans get a fresh start in Colorado
The Denver Post
Thirty-two orphans who were in the final stages of adoption when a powerful earthquake struck Haiti met their new Colorado families in a chilly hangar at Denver International Airport on Sunday.
Gov. Bill Ritter led the effort to bring the children, who range from 2 to 12 years old, to Colorado. He got help from United Airlines, which routed a 757 to Orlando, Fla., to pick up the kids free of charge.
The state paid for the mission with funds contributed by Richmond American Homes that had been set aside for humanitarian purposes, Ritter said.
The children arrived in Florida on Saturday on a U.S. military flight from Haiti, where they had been sleeping in tents since the walls of an orphanage crumbled in the Jan. 12 quake.
“For the parents and all of us who worked on this, it is pretty emotional,” Ritter said before climbing stairs to the jet where he greeted the children.
A team of 35 Colorado doctors, social workers and other volunteers accompanied the children on the flight and off the plane.
Some of the children had to be carried, while others walked the short distance across the tarmac to a hangar where family members waited.
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