A Ward of the Stateby Ron Huber
Hunger, alcoholism, and neglect were constant factors in the life of young Ronnie Somerville and his brothers. Living in a poverty-stricken area of Chicago and spending most of his days at home, alone on a dirty floor, was the existence he had come to know by the age of three. And then came the Covenant Children's Home. As a ward of the state, Ronnie was
Hunger, alcoholism, and neglect were constant factors in the life of young Ronnie Somerville and his brothers. Living in a poverty-stricken area of Chicago and spending most of his days at home, alone on a dirty floor, was the existence he had come to know by the age of three. And then came the Covenant Children's Home. As a ward of the state, Ronnie was shuffled from one house to the next, and greeted by couples that were ill-equipped to accommodate the emotional needs of a child. A Ward of the State chronicles the true experiences faced by Ron Huber as a little boy growing up in the foster care system of Chicago, Illinois in the late 1940's. It speaks volumes about the tragic realities of a system that was supposed to be for the kids, but instead failed kids like Ronnie severely. But like any good Cinderella story, the triumph uproots the storm when the warmth of one particular family encompasses Ronnie and teaches him what being loved is all about - and shows us all that the power of love can take us to heights that our beginnings never would have forecast.
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As a member of the Board of the Illinois Soldiers and Sailor's Children's School Historic Preservation Society, I would like to thank Ron for sharing his story. As a society, we must take a look at the present system of foster care for children. Through stories like Ron's we will be able to understand what these children really encounter and find better ways to help them. My hope is that every teacher, clergy person, psychologist and caregiver of children read this book. It is written in a way that you truly feel you are there experiencing the pain,lonely times, sadness and suffering Ron survived. Thank you Ron for this contribution to the children who have suffered as you have. It is my hope that they will benefit from your story and be able to release their own stories and although never forget, come to peace with their lives and gain success, self-confidence and the will to move forward with their lives. A Ward of The State could serve as a door for so many to open. Although it must have been painful for you to reach inside and share your story, I feel certain many others will survive because of your unselfish bravery in sharing your story. I look forward to the sequel and congratulate you Ron on this wonderful work.
Teresa Atlanta, Ga. (1/18/2005) I finally started reading your book last nite, and I couldn't put it down... I read half of it and then I fell asleep only to have very vivid dreams about these two young boys. In my dreams they didn't have names, they were just two angels that somehow were trapped in a cruel world. You are very gifted and courageous, to be able to put it all into words. With much admiration, Teresa
This is a book that tugs at your heart. it is depressing at times, but there is always hope and determination from the youngsters who were sent away from home by,of all people, their parents. They were maltreated by two foster parents, and finally were reared at a children's home, where they were treated best. This true story is presented as it happened to both boys. I would recommend all peoples to read it, especially children who were raised in a children's home.