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Dead foster child’s Oklahoma family will hold separate service

BY JOHNNNY JOHNSON Published: November 29, 2008
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The grandmother said she is not allowed to see or buy gifts for John’s three brothers who are still in foster care, and she does not expect to get to see them at the service.

"I don’t even know if the other children even know their little brother is gone, and no one is going to tell us if they know,” she said.

Samantha Cleary said she and her mother, Dewanna Cleary, also are thankful DHS is allowing them to hold a service with their own minister and song choices, but Samantha Cleary said she would really like to see her other four children who are still in DHS custody.

"I still need to know that they are OK,” she said.

Havlik said she is glad DHS allowed the biological family to put together a memorial service rather than just letting them walk in and walk out for a viewing, but she had criticism of DHS — describing its power as unchecked.

"I still want to make the public aware that DHS has so much control that they can manipulate your life and never even look you in the eye,” she said. "I want people in Oklahoma to wake up and realize this could happen to you. All someone has to do is tell something ugly about you.”

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