My name is Dee Gordy, I had sole custody of my 13 year old son, Shane for 8 yrs.
On October 20, 2004, Cynthia Sanderson gave custody to my ex-husband, who had not
been overly concerned about our son until last year. Before we get into my story,
I have a lot to say that was not allowed in court, so I am hoping that you will stay
with me through the whole story. I was afraid for over a year to say anything because
of our case being in the Appeals Court, but I am not going to be afraid anymore.
They can’t do anymore damage to my son, myself, or my family than they already have.
Parents, you need to know what is going on in our court system. I had asked for some
help with Shane, to see if there was something we could do to help him better himself
in school. He has had a really hard time all through his school years and his birth
father new it, but told in his papers he filed in court that he never was informed.
So he took the information I gave him to help our son and used it against me in court.
I went through a not so good last marriage and had tried to work things out on several
occasions, but instead of thinking it was a good thing to do to save my marriage,
I instead got it held against me in court. My ex’s attorney told me that I was putting
my marriage ahead of my child. I thought our court system was for keeping a marriage
together and not holding it against you in court. What are the real ideas in our
supposedly good attorney’s and judge’s minds when you get considered a bad person
for trying to make a marriage work???
Through the loss of my son, I also lost my job at a local physician’s office. The
office manager told me that due to things that had happened to me in my life, it
had gone against me and they decided I should get over this and go on with my life.
You let anyone of them go through a child being taken away that you had sole custody
of and was there everyday of his life for over 12 years, through all the times he
was sick and his hard times, then they could tell me to get over it and go on. I
will never get over the day this happened. Seeing my son run down the hall yelling
“No”. My daughter and oldest son having to go find him. Then him and I in the court
room floor holding one another crying and saying it’s not fair. He was so pitiful.
No one can ever imagine the torment this judge can do to a family. We all literally
went through hell that day. All I could do was hold him and rock. I couldn’t stand
up and I sure didn’t want to let go of my son. I had always been there for him and
now he was going to be taken from me. You go through blaming yourself but I did what
all mothers do: Raise and love your kids the best you know how. NO ONE can tell you
anything unless they have gone through this ordeal. I had been at this place of employment
for almost three years. I have learned one thing in life, be very careful who you
put your trust in. In times like this you find out who your true friends are. But
through faith and my family, I have struggled through. I still have bad days.
My son is a great child and yes has had some problems in life, as do a lot of divorced
children. Shane has been condemned as a bad child and HE IS NOT. He just loves to
be the center of attention. A lot of children are that way. The people who have done
this great injustice to my son can never understand the torment they have put on
this child. His brother, sister, and grandparents are all here. He is eight hours
away from here in Alabama, (in the middle of nowhere, swamp land), with a birth father
who is an over the road truck driver, is only home on the weekends and sometimes
not all of them, and a step-mother, (who has never had any kids). Her family are
the only close neighbors. Since my son has been with his birth father, they have
taken him to a psychiatrist , taken him to a parole over finding a watch, suspended
him from school for three days for finding a watch, and on his last report card he
had four F’s. This child does not want to be with his birth father. He has told him
so on several occasions. On September 10, 2004, Shane’s birth father and I talked
on the phone about things going on there. That very evening, Shane, myself, and his
father all were on the phone and Shane told him he wanted to come home, (Gordy, my
new husband was on the other phone also). He told us that he could come home. On
Monday, September 13, 2004, my ex-husband went to withdraw him from school, because
that is what he told Shane and I. He was to let him come home the weekend of the
18th. He changed his mind because he can and has control over what goes on with Shane
now even though we have joint custody. We have had nothing but TROUBLE over the whole
situation. I always went out of my way to make sure Shane saw his birth father when
I had custody. It even caused problems in my last marriage, but I felt it was important
that Shane see his father. To my son that was devastating, he had already called
his brother and sister to tell them he was coming home. Since all this, my son had
failed in his school work.
The old saying goes, “Anyone can be a father, but it takes someone special to be
a Dad.” Well that is what my new husband is to Shane and that’s what he calls him
when he is home with us. My son looks up to him, and is allowed to be a kid in our
home. He isn’t being made to be something he is not. The day my ex took my son, Shane
asked me why he couldn’t have met Gordy, which is what we call my new husband, a
long time ago, then we wouldn’t have to be going through this. By the way, my husband
has successfully raise six children of his own. They are all grown and on their own.
I had seven witnesses and five letters on my behalf that never got into court. The
attorney on my ex-husband’s behalf knew how to use up all the time on the three hour
time limit that was allowed in family court, on that horrible and devastating day
in October 2003. We found out from my attorney that Cynthia Sanderson is the only
judge who uses the three hour time limit in her court. People who are in the system
for murder have a fairer shot at life than our children do in Sanderson’s court room.
Our judicial system is all twisted around and something needs to be done to change
our laws. This three hour time limit for one person to be allowed to change a child’s
whole life needs to be CHANGED!!!!! No one person should have the right to decide
what she feels best with no just cause, when she herself sits in court and on tape
said she guessed she wasn’t paying attention when my ex-husband said his wife was
unstable in court due to her hormones.
I want the readers of this story to know that this judge has the power to do what
she wants and it does not matter what evidence you have or how may witnesses that
can testify on your behalf. She does not listen to what is being said, signs off
on other papers that other people from the court house bring in for her to sign,
looks up at the clock to see what time it is on several occasions, rubbing her face,
can’t make her mind up on what evidence she will allow. Judge Sanderson is so unfair
on that issue, she allows one side to use as she calls it here say and not the other.
When someone specifically tells you something it is not hear say. She just does not
pay attention. But she has the nerve to tell you that you don’t act concerned.
She has no idea what my life or my child’s life has been like. You can’t determine
anything in three hours. She wouldn’t like it at all if someone came and turned her
whole life upside down in that amount of time not knowing all the facts. Just what
she wanted to hear is what she heard. It all depends on who you and your attorney
are. I will continue to fight for my son to return home and be with the family he
wants to be with. He’s worth fighting for, he’s my son.
Making a child stay where he doesn’t want to be is cruel and unjust. To me, his birth
father was trying to play super dad and jump right in after all these years and fix
everything. Well, all he has done is make things worse. He wasn’t so concerned for
over eight years. My whole question is, why now after all this time are you so concerned.
This didn’t seem to matter thought in Judge Sanderson’s court room. Things probably
can’t be changed on our court case, (which is in Appeals Court waiting a decision
right now), but we are here letting the people know what is going on in our crooked
court system as it is. There are some judges whom I have a lot of respect for in
the Paducah court system, but not Judge Sanderson. All the parents in this group
are just trying to help children in the future. We want all this stopped and so we
will go on fighting for what we feel is right.
The public needs to know how our system is serving them. I as a mother am hoping
that all parents with children listen to what I am saying. This could just as easily
happen to you and your children, as it has been done to a lot more parents than you
realize. I have found out one thing in this whole situation, it does not matter what
is best for your child, especially when they tell the judge and their birth father
that they want to stay with their mother, as my son did. It is solely based on whatever
mood the judge is in or if she is even paying attention at all.
To Courtney and Jessica, I hope you read my story and then you need to have been
in my shoes and it wouldn’t be a sob story. I got your message. Let’s stop this mess,
our judges having the right to change lives for NO JUST CAUSE!!! NO matter how hard
you try and hard it is being a single parent, (which is what I was when I went to
court), it can be held against you. If you child is not an A and B student in school
or is just a kid, then anyone can come in and take them from you like they did with
my son. To all the judges and lawyers who think they can play God with peoples lives,
whom they know nothing about and take their lives away from them, the life they have
always known, (even if it isn’t the luxurious life of a judge or lawyer’s child),
I hope you can live with yourselves!!! You had no right to take my child and rip
him out of my life just because you can!!! You are not God and He is the only one
who has the right to judge me as a person. This is for you Shane, Mom is fighting
for you with all I have. I love you son with all my hear. Maybe someone is listening
to me that can help bring you home where you belong.
I want a special thank you to my husband Gordy for al the support you have given
me and my children. I know all this has been hard on you, but I know with the type
of person you are, you are always gong to be there by my side. I thank God so very
much for you Gordy. You just do not know what an inspiration you have been foe me.
I could not have made it without God and you by my side. I love you more an more
every day that goes by and my three children love you just the same. We all appreciate
the kind of step-father that you have been. This may not all be said exactly like
I feel, but as you know, I’m not real good at putting it into words. Also, thank
you to all my friends and witnesses for being there for Shane and I. I will never
Parents stand up with us as a group and save our children before someone else’s child
gets stripped from their home. I’m pleading to you to listen to what I am saying
as a parent and mother who loves her child and will keep fighting for a worthy cause.
Contact www.kyfather.org. They have been a blessing for my family. We need to hear
back from the public. So please let us know your comments.