During the summer of 2006, Melissa Hawach lived through every mother’s nightmare: her daughters, six-year-old Hannah and three-year-old Cedar, were kidnapped by their father and swept away to Lebanon in a desperate attempt to force a custody agreement. In this brave and gripping true-life account, Hawach narrates the extraordinary details of the kidnapping and the remarkable lengths to which she went in order to get her daughters back. From her home-turned-command-post in Calgary, to Sydney, Australia, to dangerous Hezbollah territory in Lebanon, Hawach and her hired security team plotted a reclamation strategy that relied on stop-watch execution, incredible amounts of cash and luck. Flight of the Dragonfly is a book written with courage and candor, bravery and passion. It will resonate with any parent who has lost a child if only for a moment.
Melissa Hawach and her husband, Joe, lived in Calgary, Alberta and had been separated for just a few months. Their separation didn’t come with the usual knock ‘em down drag out fight, but instead they separated with harmonious agreement. Due to this amicable separation, it came as a bomb-shattering shock to Melissa when she received a phone call on July 19, 2006 from her brother-in-law informing her that her two beloved daughters were gone and weren’t coming back.
Joe’s family lived in Australia and he had taken six-year-old Hannah and three-year-old Cedar to visit for 3 weeks, but when Melissa stopped hearing from them after only 2 weeks into their holiday, she was told Joe had actually taken the girls into war torn Lebanon, his original home. Melissa was told that Joe had no intentions whatsoever of bringing his daughters back to Canada. Melissa was shocked, devastated, and rocked to her core. Once in Lebanon, Joe was attempting to force a custody agreement.
Melissa’s strength and courage defied the odds even though the obstacles thrown in her path would deter anyone else Melissa was never prepared to give up on Hannah and Cedar. With no money in the bank, thanks to a spending spree by Joe, Melissa turned to family and friends and eventually to private investigators to diplomatic and legal resources.
This young woman went through any mothers’ worst nightmare but was willing to do anything to get her daughter’s back. She even travelled to both Australia and the very dangerous Lebanon.
This is Melissa’s story. It will make you laugh and it will make you cry but most of all, it will make you want to hug your kids a little more each day. An absolutely amazing story!!