The father of a Cherokee girl at the heart of a bitter custody battle released a statement to the media for the first time Thursday.
Dusten Brown and his biological daughter, Veronica, were at the center of a cross-country custody fight that started in 2012.
Brown is a Cherokee Nation citizen who used the Indian Child Welfare Act in an attempt to regain custody of his daughter, after a family in South Carolina adopted her.
The Cherokee Assistant Attorney General read Brown's statement at a summit about giving tribes more input in Indian adoption cases.
"Nothing will ever replace her presence in our home. Veronica has a new little brother that we hope she will meet one day and have a relationship with," said Chrissi Nimmo
Tribal rights supporters at the summit wore pink in honor of Veronica and all Cherokee children no longer living with Indian families.