Jesse Rivera is a young father of three. At 28, he works as an auto service manager at a local shop and is still recovering from a tangle with state child welfare authorities in Arizona and Nevada after he was misidentified as the father of a 10-year-old boy.
With help from attorney Larry Weinsteen and his assistant, Michelle McCracken, Rivera prevailed after providing a DNA test and battling it out in a court hearing.
“It was real bad,” Rivera said. “I felt bad because nobody would help me.”
When he reflects on his experience, which has cost the working man more than $7,000 in very difficult economic times, Rivera tries not to be bitter. And he thinks about his own kids, two girls and one boy.
“My children are everything to me,” Rivera said. “That’s all I work for. I work for my family.”
Read the column in Sunday’s Review-Journal.