Get new posts by email:

How to Use this Blog

BOOZHOO! We've amassed tons of information and important history on this blog since 2010. If you have a keyword, use the search box below. Also check out the reference section above. If you have a question or need help searching, use the contact form at the bottom of the blog.

We want you to use BOOKSHOP! (the editor will earn a small amount of money or commission. (we thank you) (that is our disclaimer statement)

This is a blog. It is not a peer-reviewed journal, not a sponsored publication... WE DO NOT HAVE ADS or earn MONEY from this website. The ideas, news and thoughts posted are sourced… or written by the editor or contributors.

EMAIL ME: (outlook email is gone)


Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Native Adoptee Susan Fedorko: Veronica’s 'Lost Bird Wings' Will Fly Her Back

Susan Fedorko's first book, Cricket: Secret Child of a Sixties Supermodel


Susan Fedorko was 40 years old when she found her birth family—or rather, when a long-lost sister found her. Her first book, Cricket: Secret Child of a Sixties Supermodel (Outskirts Press, 2012) chronicles Fedorko’s journey from Native American adoptee-turned “white” mother and wife, to a person reunited with her extended family. That family hails from the Grand Portage Indian Reservation people on her mother’s side and the White Earth Nation on her father’s, both Chippewa/Ojibwe. In an unexpected twist, Fedorko discovered that just a few years after her birth, her birth mother—Cathee Dahmen—had become an immensely popular supermodel, probably the first Native American woman to attain that status.

RELATED: Reclaiming her Identity: A Conversation With Native Adoptee and Author Susan Fedorko

Fedorko sent Indian Country Today Media Network the below gripping open letter to Veronica Brown's adoptive parents Matt and Melanie Capobianco.

By Susan Fedorko:
My heart is heavy for Dusten Brown and the entire Cherokee Nation/Native American people.
He has done everything right he could do to keep his biological daughter Veronica.
I am a Native American adoptee who was adopted prior to the Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978. I spent my entire life trying to return to my Native people. I finally returned at the age of 40.
These things we do know about what Veronica will likely endure as an adoptee:
1. She will most likely constantly be challenged with her identity. She knows who her biological father is. On paper, her father may be Matt Capobianco. But in heart and soul it is Dusten Brown.
2. She will most likely never trust again. You have ripped her away from her father and step mother and sibling.
3. She will most likely yearn to be accepted. Relocating her from her biological family will leave her “unsure” where she belongs.
4. She will most likely be reminded that she is an adoptee all her childhood years. School age children will serve as a reminder that she is different from the other kids.

My heart aches that Veronica will not be exposed to her Indian language and customs. These traditions and customs should be a part of her life as a Cherokee child. She should be able to dance and pray—it is her birth-given right that you have stolen from her. This child should have never been rendered as “adoptable”; she has a loving father and family.
The Native American community has been run over once again, cast aside without regard. Veronica Brown is of Native American decent, and her civil rights as Native have been violated. The rest of America just stands by and watches a non-Native couple steal her away from her father who was determined fit to raise her.
She will one day become a teenager, and then adult Veronica. Her Lost Bird Wings will find her way back to Oklahoma.
Undoubtedly you will have 14 years with her—14 years of pretending to be her parents. It was obvious that Veronica was a member of a perfectly loving family. I just do not understand this degree of selfishness—to take one man’s biological daughter away from him, when clearly they were meant to be together.  What are we missing when a non-Native couple can waltz in and claim our Indian children?
I am a Native American adoptee who wishes that I had someone fighting for me as diligently as Dusten Brown has fought for his daughter.
Adoption is not for the weak. I have survived it, and if there is one thing that I have learned it is that Native blood does not wash away, regardless of how much other blood runs through our veins. We are proud Indian people.  I am sure that Veronica will return home to stay after learning of the circumstances that led her away from her biological father.
I hope in the future our Indian Child Welfare laws will be enforced to protect our Indian children. To protect them from being planted into another non-Native family.

Suzie also wrote a narrative in the anthology TWO WORLDS: Lost Children of the Indian Adoption Projects. Both her memoir and the anthology are available on

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please: Share your reaction, your thoughts, and your opinions. Be passionate, be unapologetic. Offensive remarks will not be published. We are getting more and more spam. Comments will be monitored.
Use the comment form at the bottom of this website which is private and sent direct to Trace.

Happy Visitors!

They Took Us Away

They Took Us Away
click image to see more and read more

Blog Archive

Most READ Posts


You are not alone

You are not alone

To Veronica Brown

Veronica, we adult adoptees are thinking of you today and every day. We will be here when you need us. Your journey in the adopted life has begun, nothing can revoke that now, the damage cannot be undone. Be courageous, you have what no adoptee before you has had; a strong group of adult adoptees who know your story, who are behind you and will always be so.

Diane Tells His Name

click photo

60s Scoop Survivors Legal Support


Lost Birds on Al Jazeera Fault Lines

Lost Birds on Al Jazeera Fault Lines
click to read and listen about Trace, Diane, Julie and Suzie


As the single largest unregulated industry in the United States, adoption is viewed as a benevolent action that results in the formation of “forever families.”
The truth is that it is a very lucrative business with a known sales pitch. With profits last estimated at over $1.44 billion dollars a year, mothers who consider adoption for their babies need to be very aware that all of this promotion clouds the facts and only though independent research can they get an accurate account of what life might be like for both them and their child after signing the adoption paperwork.


Original Birth Certificate Map in the USA

Why tribes do not recommend the DNA swab

Rebecca Tallbear entitled: “DNA, Blood, and Racializing the Tribe”, bearing out what I only inferred:

Detailed discussion of the Bering Strait theory and other scientific theories about the population of the modern-day Americas is beyond the scope of this essay. However, it should be noted that Indian people have expressed suspicion that DNA analysis is a tool that scientists will use to support theories about the origins of tribal people that contradict tribal oral histories and origin stories. Perhaps more important,the alternative origin stories of scientists are seen as intending to weaken tribal land and other legal claims (and even diminish a history of colonialism?) that are supported in U.S. federal and tribal law. As genetic evidence has already been used to resolve land conflicts in Asian and Eastern European countries, this is not an unfounded fear.

Google Followers