The Foreign Service Journal, December 2023

THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL | DECEMBER 2023 59 The team was honest about the unknowns but assured them the U.S. government was committed to reuniting families. One man was tormented over whether to board the plane. Hegerle offered basic facts: The Nicaraguans would receive U.S. humanitarian parole for two years and permission to work. He asked whether the man’s wife had brought homecooked meals to the jail, as many families do. Yes, the man confirmed. “If you work hard, you’ll be sending money back to your wife,” Hegerle pointed out. “If you get on this plane, you can be your family’s provider.” The man walked up the jetway. At another point, tensions on the tarmac rose between waiting passengers and military police. One prisoner paced back and forth near the plane, trying to decide whether to stay or go; police Marta Youth addresses passengers flight attendant–style. “We never forgot you,” she said. With her is Juan Lorenzo Holmann Chamorro, a Nicaraguan newspaper publisher who was jailed in 2021. MILEYDI GUILARTE