“New York— On January 1, 2020, 10-year-old #MinaiiHenry lost her battle with #Osteoscarcoma She had only been diagnosed in early August 2019. While friends and family began to mourn, Minaii’s father had no idea his daughter was gone. Much like her sudden diagnosis, #LeonHenry was left out of his daughter’s last moments. By the time he found out from social media, arrangements had been made for viewings and a burial ceremony for Minaii without his knowledge or input. Despite being in the middle of a long and bitter custody battle, Leon was granted a court order which allowed him and his family access to Minaii’s viewings and burial. Yet when he arrived, he was met with resistance from the other side of Minaii’s family. In their determination to block Leon and his family from seeing Minaii, the maternal family formed a human barricade in front of the body and then, covered her with a blanket. Leon’s family called the police amidst threats of physical violence, racial slurs, and aggression from the maternal family members. However, the Staten Island NYPD were unsuccessful in enforcing Leon’s court order and eventually forced both families to leave. Since then, Leon was able to get a temporary injunction to halt Minaii’s burial without his approval. As of January 7th, the maternal family is still taking measures to bar Leon and his family from saying their last goodbyes.”

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