GROVE — Randy and Marcia Cloud have heard the vast array of comments after people learned of their family's journey to adopt a son from an African orphanage.
Their story is quite similar to other parents who adopt a child from a foreign country, but the unusual twist is that they were able to bring their child home in just a little more than three months instead of a process that could extend more than two years.
“We negotiated an alternative approach with the Zambian and United States government that allowed us to complete all the necessary steps in the adoption process,” Randy Cloud said.
Cloud owns and operates a Tulsa investment firm and is known as “Bubba” to several thousand clients across the country who trust him to manage their retirement funds. The same blunt candor, straightforwardness and robust work ethic carried over in his effort to bring a little orphaned boy 9,000 miles to live in rural Delaware County.
“It took 10 weeks from the first time we saw a photo of Kangwa to when we arrived in Zambia to pick him up,” Marcia Cloud said.
The Clouds credit their faith and the Zambian government for speeding up the adoption.
The Zambian fostering period for a child was reduced from one year to 90 days and Kangwa was allowed to live with the Clouds in the U.S. during the foster period.
“We were allowed to complete the adoption and fostering process at the same time,” Cloud said.
The Clouds were successful in petitioning the Zambia government to allow them to bring the 4-year-old boy to America for several weeks as their foster child and then returning to Zambia in October with him for the final adoption.
“We didn't cheat, we didn't bribe, we didn't have an open door,” Cloud said. “We had to bang down the door.”
In addition, the couple had support from Sen. Jim Inhofe. As co-chair of the Senate Adoption Caucus, Inhofe also is a doting grandfather to Zegita Marie, who was adopted by Inhofe's daughter Molly from an Ethiopian orphanage.
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It took 10 weeks from the first time we saw a photo of Kangwa to when we arrived in Zambia to pick him up.”
Randy and Marcia Cloud adopted a son from an African orphanage.