Today life is much different for Cook Mayiik.
“When I was in the war, I was shot in the leg,” said Cook Mayiik, a Lost Boy of Sudan.
Mayiik walks with a limp after he was wounded decades ago while fighting in the Second Sudanese Civil War.
“Yup, I was shot here,” said Mayiik.
In 2001, Mayiik fled the South Sudan and came to Omaha. In 2009, he found his home away from home.
“We try to treat everybody like family around here. So he is part of our Omaha Door and Window Family,” said President Tom Murnan.
James, as he is called by his co-workers adores his job. But, something in his life is missing. In 2012, Mayiik went back to the Sudan and married his wife Ayuor. In July of 2013, they had a son.
Shortly after the birth of his son, Mayiik had to come back to the US without his family.
"Sometimes I want to cry about it. She misses me a lot and I miss her a lot,” said Mayiik.
“Do you ever cry about it,” asked reporter Emily Szink.
“No, in my country men cannot cry,” said Mayiik.
Mayiik talks to his wife and son on the phone, but hasn’t seen them in three years.
He works seven days a week to pay for both his rent and his wife’s rent in Uganda.
After two years and thousands of dollars, Mayiik’s wife and son finally got Visa approval in July. But, now he needs $2000 by the end of October to fly them to the U.S., or their Visas will expire and he’ll have to reapply.
“I try to raise funds, but it is too hard,” said Mayiik.
James’ co-worker Matt Murnan heard of his struggle, so he started a GoFundMe page to help raise money.
“I mean life is all about family,” said Matt Murnan.
Murnan hopes through the kindness of the community, James can finally be reunited with his family.
If you would like to donate money to James click this link: https://www.gofundme.com/unitejamesfamily?ssid=737647263&pos=1