It was an emotional reunion for Omar Guzman after he saw his children for the first time in 13 years.
His 17-year-old daughter, Margie Guzman, and 14-year-old son, Evander, made the long trek alone to South Texas from Puerto Cortes, Honduras.
The children crossed the Rio Grande and were picked up by Border Patrol in McAllen, TX. The children were detained on June 1 and would remain in federal custody until Wednesday. They were reunited with their father at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.
"I paid $5,000 to fly them from Phoenix to Atlanta," Guzman told CBS46 News reporter Mike Paluska in Spanish.
Guzman said the trip from Honduras to the United States is extremely dangerous. At one point he couldn't reach his children for 15 days. Why take the risk? Guzman said crime and gang violence is so bad in Honduras that he worried his children would likely be killed.
"There is a lot of crime and the truth is we can't live in our own country," Guzman said. "That is why we are asking the government to give us an opportunity to be here. We are good people. We came here to work and move the country forward and move our families forward."
Guzman said the government moved his children from Texas to Phoenix, AZ. Once they got to Phoenix, Guzman said they were able to contact him and begin the process of reuniting them.
The father could not hold back tears as he hugged his son for the first time in 13 years. His son was just a baby, his daughter a couple years old when Guzman said he made the decision to cross illegally into the United States.
Guzman said he never thought this day would come and was overcome with emotion.
"I don't have any words, thank you God for this opportunity," Guzman said.
The journey for Guzman's children is far from over. He needs to hire an immigration attorney, fill out more paperwork and appear before the courts. There is the risk his children could be deported out of the country, and he could be deported as well. He has been living illegally in Georgia for the past three years.
"It could happen, whatever happens is God's plan and we have to handle that if it happens," Guzman said.
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Tuesday, April 20 2010 11:21 PM EDT2010-04-21 03:21:00 GMT
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