I recently stumbled across this article from last year from the Children’s Rights Council’s publication. It’s unbelievable and, given the letters I get and the stories I hear, totally believable. Very, very sad.
CRC Member Loses Child
CRC member and child advocate Tim Dycus of Nebraska lost his 11-year-old daughter, Addie, to brain cancer on July 8, 2005. The day after the funeral, Tim learned that the funeral home had given cards and memorials left for the “Dycus Family” to the mother with the expectation that she share those with him.
Over many months, Tim and the funeral home spent considerable effort trying to get the child’s mother to share the cards left in memory of their daughter with Tim. He wanted to acknowledge and thank those people who were so gracious and compassionate to his family. Tim said that the mom refused to comply, and with her attorney, took the position that his rights to any information about Addie, including cards and memorials, terminated upon her death. They also stated that Tim was not entitled to any of Addie’s clothing to keep as mementos, as they stated that Addie’s personal property is the mother’s exclusive property. Since Tim was divorced, he had paid more than $70,000 in child support.
Tim attended almost all of Addie’s school, church, and recreational events including soccer, softball, and dance, in or out of town since her birth, and continually tried to get more time with his daughters but was confined to the typical every other weekend and a few hours on Wednesday evening.
In a request to the judiciary, the District Court in Adams County, Nebraska ruled for the mother. The court stated that the decision as to whether to share was up to her, stating Tim needed “to wait while the other parent processed and went through the grieving process.” She then ordered Tim to pay the majority of the mother’s attorney fees!
Tim is also grieving.