"Ok, we've got to start walking away," Pjetro Govjcevic said as he guided his children through Detroit Metro Airport.
It's one of the hardest decisions Govjcevic has had to make: To separate from his three young children — who were born in America — and send them away from the only home they've ever known to a world far away so they can be with their mother.
She was deported to Albania in April.
"I'm heartbroken," Govjcevic said. "Devastated, I mean I'm losing my family. I mean, I don't know how else to word it."
"I could never be a mother," Govjcevic said. "I can't work, provide for them and raise them properly. I can raise them, but there is nothing like a mother. We have to make sacrifices."
Cile Precetaj, the children's mother, has no criminal record. She came to America 18 years ago seeking asylum. She claimed she was seeking freedom from a life of death threats and forced prostitution.
That request was ultimately denied, and jail would follow, and then deportation. Fifteen-year-old Michael last saw his mother when she dropped him off at school and kissed him on the cheek.
"What they did to our family is so messed up and so wrong," Michael said. "I want somebody to stop this from happening. I want ICE to stop pushing around innocent immigrants because that's bullying."