Deported US Veteran Wins Case
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Deportation is a real threat to many people that currently reside in America. It is a very scary thing to go through and families are split apart as well as countless lives. Such is the story of Marco Chavez. Chavez was a baby when his parents traveled to the United States. He later served four years in the Marine Corps and was honorably discharged. He was deported to Mexico after he was convicted of a minor offense. This was 15 years ago, and his family has lived apart from him all these years ago. The Chavez family did at one point live together in Mexico, but the change was too much for everyone involved. Ultimately, his wife and kids lived in America.

Chavez decided to fight this ruling the best way he can so he can regain some of his life back. He wanted to regain full American residency. Chavez has three sons and those boys, now young men, did not have the privilege of being raised by their father. He says this of his children. "One of the things I wanted to let my kids know is they did have a father and I did not plan to leave them," said Chavez, who has been living in the border city of Tijuana. … I just want to be there to support them. They still might have resentment but that's understandable." Chavez started working with Hector Barajas-Varela. Barajas-Varela is the founder and executive director of the Deported Veterans Support House, which is based in Tijuana, Mexico. Barajas-Varela has been an integral part in regaining American residency.

California Gov. Jerry Brown pardoned Chavez which ensured his safe delivery to the States. Brown said Chavez "served our country, earned a pardon and deserves to come back home.” Chavez has a plan to meet up with his parents at the U.S.-Mexico border crossing in San Diego and continue to Los Angeles to finish the necessary paperwork. After that, he will live in Iowa and start rebuilding his relationship with his family. It has been nearly five years since Chavez has seen his children.

American Civil Liberties Union attorney Jennie Pasquarella reports that this experience will hopefully be an agent of hope for those in similar circumstances.