MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Oklahoma News

October 16, 2013

Ceremony in Tulsa honors father of Cherokee girl

TULSA (AP) — The biological father of a Cherokee girl at the center of a lengthy custody dispute was honored in an elaborate ceremony Tuesday by the National Congress of American Indians.

Dozens of military veterans filed into a downtown convention hall to honor Dusten Brown — a member of the Cherokee Nation and the father of 4-year-old Veronica — and recognize his service with the Oklahoma National Guard.  The congress is holding its 70th annual convention this week in Tulsa.

Last week, Brown announced he was dropping all custody claims and was working with the South Carolina couple who adopted Veronica on ways he could be involved in the girl’s life.

During a ceremony that featured drumming and Native American songs, tribal members wrapped a brightly colored prayer quilt around Brown. The gift is intended to comfort him on the days he misses his daughter. Brown was also presented with an eagle feather to honor his service in the military.

“He is a good man, a good soldier and a good father,” said S. Joe Crittenden, deputy principal chief of the Tahlequah-based Cherokee Nation. “Veronica will always be a Cherokee citizen, and we look forward to the day she comes home to Dusten.”

Sandy White Hawk, who works on Native American adoption cases, called on attendees to pray for Brown and for Matt and Melanie Capobianco, Veronica’s adoptive parents.

“Pray for all the Veronicas in our communities; all the Dustens in our communities,” she also said.

Veronica has been the subject of court battles since she was born to a non-Cherokee mother, who put the girl up for adoption. The Capobiancos had been lined up to receive custody since 2009.

1
Text Only
Oklahoma News
AP Video
Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue
Poll

Should a federal judge have the power to strike down Oklahoma's ban on gay marriage?

Yes
No
     View Results
Featured Ads
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Stocks