Local family reacts to Russian ban on adoptions by Americans

A local family is trying to wrap its collective mind around a new Russian law signed Friday that bans American adopting Russian children.

The adoption ban is largely considered a response to a law signed by President Barack Obama that calls for sanctions against Russians who allegedly committed human rights violations.

If the ban had been in effect five years ago, the Ritzman family of Union, Kentucky would not include 6-year-old Lleyton, who they adopted from Russia in 2008.

"Having been to Russia, having spent a lot of time in Russia, seeing the orphanage that Lleyton was in, and the conditions there, it's heart-wrenching for us to think about those kids that are going to be out there without the possibility of being adopted by Americans," said Matt Ritzman, the father of Lleyton and three other adopted children.

The Ritzmans were thankful to have their son with them Friday night but also keeping their thoughts with the 50 or so American families that were in the final stages of adopting Russian children prior to the ban being signed into law.

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