I am the father of Emerald Stacklie and I would like to clarify a few points from the article on Tuesday. The article stated that life with me was not much better than living with her mother in California. I had Emi off and on throughout her younger years. Every time her mother would call and tell me that I needed to come and get her, I never hesitated and cared for her until her mother would take her back.
At the end of eighth grade, Emi came to live with me since her mother was going through a divorce and asked that I taker her. I was a single father raising my two girls, one of whom I have had full custody of since she was 4, and struggled to keep my shop running and care for the girls at the same time. I bought her a car, dirt bike, paid insurance and gas, put her through cheerleading in school, etc. But like all parents of teenagers, we had our disagreements.
During her junior year, not sophomore, Emi decided along with her mother and I that she could live with a friend for a month. At the end of that time she came home, but decided that she no longer wanted to live there. She was 17 at this time.
She did go back and forth between friends, but was never “kicked out” of the house and was asked repeatedly over the next year to come home. Even though she was out of the house, she would still come to me for help with her car, and occasionally would call after arguments with her friends. I would rush to wherever she happened to be, sometimes bringing her home until she decided to leave again. She was on the verge of moving back home when her grandmother made arrangements for her to move in with her boyfriend’s family.
After the accident, Emi eventually decided to come back and stay at home for the most part. We love and care for Emerald and always have. We want her to be healthy and happy, but there is only so much you can do for someone who refuses help. I try to support her in every way that I can and I am absolutely embarrassed and humiliated by the information printed in that article.