Shortly after Betsy Emanuel began the adoption process for Maria Fernanda, Sue Hedberg upped the ante, revealing in an email that the Guatemalan girl had a newborn sister named Ana Christina. But only three months later, CCI delivered Betsy devastating news: both girls had disappeared, taken back CCI told her, by their biological mother who was accompanied by two men with guns.
In November 2007, Betsy Emanuel adopted another girl through CCI, Emily Belle, but she couldn't forget about Maria Fernanda. Around the same time, Betsy learned Maria Fernanda and her sister had resurfaced and were being offered for adoption again, though not through CCI. Digging deeper, Emanuel found an article in a Guatemalan newspaper which reported the girls had been stolen from their birth mother, Mildred Alvarado.
Betsy got in touch with a Guatemalan human rights group, forwarding all the information she had. Within weeks, a local court reunited both girls with their mother. And five years later, Betsy was finally able to meet Mildred Alvarado, right, and her two girls, Maria Fernanda and Ana Christina.