Franklin family fights abroad to adopt daughter - WSMV Channel 4

Franklin family fights abroad to adopt daughter, arrives home for Thanksgiving

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As her new family prepared what would be her first Thanksgiving meal, 6-year-old Favor Worton sang one of the only songs she's memorized in English.

Favor is probably Tennessee's newest American. Her adopted parents brought her back to Franklin Wednesday night from Ethiopia after a political battle that kept them abroad for 21 days.

"There was a local government official in Addis Ababa that wasn't willing to release her," said Favor's adopted father Mark Worton.

Missy and Mark Worton legally adopted Favor back in August. When they got to Ethiopia, they say the president of the adoption agency there told them to go home. The Wortons say they were told Favor would be entered into the Ethiopian foster care system, where she'd most likely be forced to work for a place to stay.

"We had to hide her out, because they were talking about snatching her away," said Missy Worton.

The Wortons were only planning to be in the country four days. They were able to stay only by the help of two families who offered security and let them hide at their homes. After nearly a month, the Wortons say an Ethiopian judge ruled in their favor and allowed Favor to leave the country. Favor's aunt brought her to meet the Wortons before they left for America.

"The aunt, the first thing she did was grabbed my neck and Favor was jumping up and down in the back of the car. The first thing she (the aunt) said was, 'Take her to America, go,'" said Missy Worton.

Thursday was Favor's first full day in the United States, her first day at home and her first Thanksgiving dinner.

"I couldn't have written a better story than to have her home for Thanksgiving."

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