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Volume 8, Issue 9


September 2010

Bales employee adopts boys from Ethiopia

Bales receiving clerk Larry Euchi and his wife Shawna, along with Shawna's mother Kim, traveled to Ethiopia in June to bring home their new sons, Pawlos, now two, and Kaleb, four and one half. They worked with Holt International, the Oregon-based organization that enables international adoption and child welfare programs in several worldwide locations.

Larry, who has worked at Bales Thriftway since 1972, was adopted himself from Japan as a very young child. He and his wife have been interested in adoption for several years, and finally decided to go forward with it last year. They contacted Holt and went through the initial interviews in June '09, and were told that it would probably take quite a while before an adoption could begin. They were surprised when they found out in February that they'd been matched with the boys. Holt helped them rush through all the needed paperwork.

Larry's boys
Pawlos and Kaleb enjoy their first trip to the zoo

Larry took four weeks of vacation time and three weeks of sick leave, and he and his wife and mother-in-law traveled to Addis Ababa via Amsterdam. Arriving on Thursday night, they went to the Holt headquarters on Friday for an informational meeting, and visited a care center to meet the boys.

"Kaleb put his arms around Grandma Kim and was ready to go right away," Larry recalls. "Our driver explained to him in Ethiopian that we would be back soon. He had already figured out that we were for him." That evening they attended a cultural dinner where they were acquainted with aspects of Ethiopian life that would help them and the children adjust to each other.

On Sunday,they boarded a van and drove southeast to Durame, the boys' hometown, to meet the surviving members of their birth family. Their father had died of malaria two years before, and their mother had just died a couple of days before they applied to Holt. An older brother had been taking care of them for a while, but was unable to continue because of extreme poverty.

They took custody of the boys on Monday, and started taking care of them right away, until they left for their homeward trip on Thursday. "Pawlos was everyone's favorite at the care center," Larry says. After the usual hassles with US immigration back in Portland, the family has been settling in. "They're already picking up a lot of English, using full sentences. They love to ride in the car, and say, Mommy, faster!" Kaleb will start pre-school this fall. "It's a lot of work, but very rewarding," he says.

Larry and Shawna are building an addition to their Bethany home to accommodate the boys. "The people at Bales have really been terrific," Larry notes. "I brought the boys in the day after we got home."



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Publisher/Editor:Virginia Bruce
PO Box 91061
Portland, Oregon 97291