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Willard children fighting to stop dad's deportation

By Lynn Tramonte • Updated Jul 7, 2017 at 4:39 PM

WILLARD — In less than two weeks, on July 18, Jesus Lara of Willard, a loving father and provider for four U.S. citizen children, is set to be deported — despite having no criminal record and contributing to his community in multiple ways.

His story was first featured in the Norwalk Reflector in May and then gained national attention last month following an article in the New York Times.

Jesus’ children have been actively involved in pleading for mercy in their dad’s case. They have met with reporters and congressional offices, traveling all the way to Washington, D.C.

Jesus’ eldest son, Eric, launched a petition to U.S. Rep. Bob Gibbs that has garnered over 34,000 signatures to date.

In the petition, 14 year-old Eric writes: “I don’t know what my future would be like without my dad. Please, Rep. Gibbs, do everything you can so my father can stay with us.”

This week, in a series of video blog posts, Lynn Tramonte, Deputy Director of America’s Voice, introduces us to the rest of the Lara family: 6-year-old Elsiy, 9-year-old Anuar and 11-year-old Edwin. This series follows Tramonte’s Medium piece about Eric.

“The Trump Administration, DHS Secretary John Kelly, and U.S. Rep. Bob Gibbs must not ignore the pleas of these young children,” said Lynn Tramonte, Deputy Director of America’s Voice and Director of Ohio’s Voice. “They have a right to want to grow up with their father by their side. Secretary Kelly has the power to stop this deportation. The only question is whether he’s willing to use it.”

While each of Jesus’ four children is unique, their heartfelt message to lawmakers, the Trump Administration, and the American public is the same: their father Jesus is not a ‘bad hombre’ but a beloved, involved father, and they want him to stay here.

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