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Karina Anna-Blue Kagen ( Karen)
Karen is the oldest adopted kid in Anna and Blue's family. Karen was adopted by Blue when she was eight years old and several years before he met Anna. Karen is also from Stary Oskol, Russia. Karen is the CEO of the Kagen family corporations. She holds a BA, Masters and PHD  from UGA. She holds degrees in Medical Arts, Corporate Management and Communications. She's a licensed and certified commerical pilot and is the captain of their family Gulfstream G5 Jet. Karen adopted a baby girl from Stary Oskol. Karen is one of The Big Three.

Hi Karen and thank you for sitting down with me today on your poppa and granny's from porch.
You're welcome and it's my pleasure.

Would you tell us about how you became a Kagen and call Sawmill your home now?
It would be my pleasure. When I was a kid living in Stary Oskol my now dad Blue came there working on an architectural engineering project with my dad. They became very good friends and he was invited to stay with us in our apartment.

I was five years old then and thought wow we've got an American staying with us and I was a hero to all of my friends. He and my dad worked together off and on for two years. My dad Blue would spend several months with us, return back here to Sawmill for a couple of months then go back to Stary Oskol. He was always very kind to me and would bring me gifts and would also bring my friends gifts. He gave me a lot of Barbie's and her clothes. I still have all of those Barbies in my living room in a glass hutch behind bullet proof glass and cherish them very much.

He and my dad became like brothers to each other and he treated my mum like she was one of his own sisters. When I was seven my dad died with a massive heart attack. Uncle Blue as I called him then was notified and he was there the next day. He was just as shocked and upset as we were and stood by my mum and me like no other. We had no other family members, they had all passed on. He stayed with us for two weeks supporting us and made sure all of our needs would be taken care of for many years to come.

When he got back here to Sawmill he would call us everyday, sometimes two times a day, checking on us and to see if we needed anything. He would come for a visit with us every three months and spend a week with us. My mum got sick with cancer and he was there every four weeks then.

When my mum passed I had no where to go except to a Home because we had no more family left. He flew to Oskol for my mum's funeral and just like my dad he paid for everything and it was the best of the best at that time in Russia. He got me settled in with some family friends and came back here to Sawmill and told me you are to NEVER worry about anything, I will ALWAYS take care of you.

I was at school one morning, looked up and saw him coming in the door. I jumped up and ran to him and hugged him. At that time I didn't know I was going to have to go to a Home to live. He had received a call from our friends telling him this. He told them no way in hell will she go to a Home, I'll come and adopt her and bring her here to Sawmill with my family and me. So, that's exactly what he did and here I am now in Sawmill, very happy and would not want to be any other place in the world.

Your relocation to Sawmill.
I was a pretty much destroyed kid but, I loved and trusted him and knew I would be just fine moving to Sawmill with him and our family. His mum, my granny, was with him when he came for our adoption hearing and to take me back here to Sawmill. My granny was so very kind and loving to me and that made me feel even more loved and ready to relocate here to Sawmill. My granny made me feel like I had always been her grand daughter and I felt very comfortable with her.

At that time our family had a plane but nothing like the one we have now. That plane could not fly this far and was not a jet like our K1 is so we had to fly commercial. The first thing we had to do was get to Moscow and that was , still is a 13.5 overnight train ride. My dad Blue hated that train ride and still today calls it a brutal ride on a train.

I don't remember being scared when we left Oskol on the train to Moscow that evening. At my age then it was more like an adventure for me to be going to Moscow and then flying on a big plane to America. I also felt really special from the love and care my dad and granny were showing me so I felt ok with things.

When we got to Moscow the next morning there was a man at the Kursky train station waiting on us. He took us to an apartment near Arbat street that my dad had rented from a travel agency in Atlanta. We took hot showers and got dressed. My dad said I'm hungry so let's go to McDonalds on Arbat and get some breakfast. McDONALDS! wow that was a rose dream for me never having eaten at one before.

That was an adventure for me in it's own right and I ate two egg breakfast plates. My dad and granny were really enjoying themselves watching me eat those two breakfast plates and asked me did I want another one. We still laugh about that one for sure.

Our flight to Atlanta didn't leave until the next morning. I had never been to Moscow before so we went to the city center where Red Square and all the trendy stores are, and the big and expensive Gum Store is. We walked and enjoyed seeing all the sights. The complete time my dad and granny held my hands and made me feel so very special. We went to several stores and they bought me a few clothes but not many because the styles here in America were different.

The next morning when we went to the airport I was very excited. When we went through customs and passport control both my dad and granny called me their daughter and grand daughter and also did this on the plane flying here to America. I really felt special and loved by both of them.

We landed in Atlanta many hours later it seemed and had to go through passport control and customs there. This very nice man looked at my passport and papers and told me..welcome to America and your new home and family! That really made me feel good.

After we cleared customs and got our luggage we rode an undergroud train to the main terminal and then went up a steep and long escalator. When we got off that I heard a lot of clapping and saw signs saying Welcome Home Our Karina We Love You. I was being hugged from all directions. This was my new family there to meet us and me.

Then, there was a man standing there looking down at me smiling. He picked me up and held me and told to me...
Hello our beautiful Karina, I am your grand dad and you can call me poppa. This man, my poppa, made me feel like I was the Queen of the world until the day he passed on us and I've never forgotten this.

I was excited having so many aunts, uncles and cousins. The ride from the airport to Sawmill took several hours but we also stopped at a place called the Varsity near Georgia Tech to eat some food. Loved those chili dogs and onion rings I had never eaten before in my life and still do.

When we arrived here in Sawmill I had never seen so much beauty in my life. Beautiful mountains all around us and one large one my granny told to me was called Sawmill mountain. Every day of my life I look at Sawmill and tell that mountain I love you and thank you looking over us here in Sawmill.