The #1KSfamily wants to celebrate a big moment in the life of #OKC employee, Betrand Fonsa, who received his Green Card earlier this month, providing him permanent legal status in the USA.
Betrand’s story is marked by his devout faith and perseverance in the midst of tragedy while growing up in Mutengene, Cameroon. The oldest of 7 children, Betrand’s family lived in a shack throughout his childhood. Some of the marks of Betrand’s story are quite literal; he still bears the scars of a housefire that cost the lives of 2 siblings and put himself and another into the ER for months. Through all of this, Betrand dreamed of a better life away from the corruption and conditions of his homeland. This dream would lead him on a extraordinary journey highlighted as follows:
- Fleeing to the Congo on foot and almost losing his life in the process.
- Trafficked and placed under horrific conditions in Qatar after being robbed of his identification and legal documents by his “employer.”
- Living in China on a student visa after a brief return to Cameroon
- Returning to Cameroon again only to witness further senseless killing and displacement of family and friends.
- Seeking refuge, Betrand made it to the United States with no place to go and nowhere to be except a cab ride to anywhere. He eventually settled in Maryland.
- Betrand fell in love with a young lady in Oklahoma, who herself fled Cameroon, prompting him to move to OKC.
- This young lady had an adopted family that surrounded her and her daughter. They quickly fell in love with Betrand as well.
- They were married in 2019 and altogether they have 3 beautiful children.
Though he has traveled so far, in many ways, Betrand’s story is just beginning. One thing is for sure though, wherever he goes, we will be with him the rest of his journey. We are proud to count him one of ours! #WeAre1KirbySmith