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What happened to Haitian orphans Lovely and Charly?

The desperate situations of Haitian orphans — and the travails of U.S. parents trying to adopt them — have been covered extensively on msnbc.com and TODAYshow.com in the wake of Haiti’s devastating earthquake. Here are updates on two Haitian children we’ve profiled: Charly Schumacher, 11, and Lovely Benedict, 2. Charly’s storyCharly is now safe in his new home in Wilmington, Ohio, wit

The desperate situations of Haitian orphans — and the travails of U.S. parents trying to adopt them — have been covered extensively on msnbc.com and TODAYshow.com in the wake of Haiti’s devastating earthquake. Here are updates on two Haitian children we’ve profiled: Charly Schumacher, 11, and Lovely Benedict, 2. Charly’s storyCharly is now safe in his new home in Wilmington, Ohio, with his adoptive parents, Jan and Paul Schumacher. The Schumachers had been trying to adopt Charly since 2005, when he was 6. Charly had lived with them for a year when he came to the United States at age 5 for treatment after being burned in a kerosene-lamp fire. He returned to Haiti when his medical visa expired. “That was a nightmare sending him back,” Jan Schumacher recalled. “He was screaming and clinging and didn’t want to leave with the Haitian stewardess.” Since that time, Jan Schumacher has visited Charly at his orphanage in Haiti and has struggled with red tape and obstacles to his adoption. When the earthquake hit, she panicked; she had no idea whether he was alive or dead. It turns out that Charly survived but was injured in the earthquake, so he was cleared to travel to the U.S. for necessary medical treatment. Jan Schumacher traveled to Miami to pick Charly up. After yet more delays, she sent this update via e-mail: “I was finally able to clear the FBI and get Charly out of ... Florida on Thursday a.m., Jan. 28. What a prickly time it was down there, I got to see Charly for about an hour a day and beg for them to keep checking on my status. I had to give them copies of all of our adoption papers, financial disclosure info, get several notarized and get fingerprinted, which is what we waited on all week. “But we're home now!!!!! Charly is standing here bugging me as I write this ... it is so nice! ;)” Lovely’s story

As of this writing, the story of little Lovely has no such happy ending. Her adoptive parents, Janelle and Bryan Benedict of Torrance, Calif., had completed the entire adoption process before the earthquake struck. They had just been waiting on the Haitian government to issue a passport for Lovely, who is developmentally delayed because of the effects of malnutrition and parasites. “I’ve gone and spent a week with her (in Haiti) three times,” Janelle Benedict said. “She is just the sweetest little thing. She’s beautiful. She cuddles. And when you play music she likes to dance, which is so cute. ... “She’s 2, but she’s just recently started crawling and barely started standing and taking a few steps. ... She only weighs 15 pounds because of malnutrition. But I think she will grow quickly once she gets home and gets proper food and medical attention.” Since the earthquake, the Benedicts have been struggling frantically to bring Lovely home. They came close late last week, when officials almost put Lovely on a flight to Salt Lake City with other orphans. Janelle Benedict sent this update: “We went to Salt Lake City to meet Lovely coming home on a plane that had taken humanitarian aid to Haiti. After the pilot refused to leave with the children and a big stand-off at the airport and negotiations directly with (Haiti’s) Prime Minister, 50 or so children were able to leave to Miami, but not to Utah. However, because USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services) or the Port-au-Prince Embassy made a mistake with our updated fingerprints, Lovely and 13 other children were not allowed to board. “Now, the process nearly starts over for her. She still is waiting for humanitarian parole, and then (we) hope the Prime Minister will sign her file. All the while, things are becoming very political and our team fears that they may close the door to children leaving to join the families at any moment. It’s all unbearable. We continue to wait.” The Benedicts’ efforts to bring Lovely to the United States are chronicled in a BBC video. To watch the video, click here. Related links:Painful limbo for parents adopting Haitian kidsReunited: Desperate dad goes to Haiti to rescue kidsAmericans rush to adopt orphaned Haitian childrenHome at last: 7 Haitian orphans arrive in U.S.Haiti judge questions jailed Americans