The Reason I Play: Maryland's Melvin Keihn, Part I
Melvin Keihn was born during one of Liberia’s bloodiest Civil Wars. He grew up with his mother, Satta Johnson, in the countryside; his father, Bainda Keihn, remained in the capital city of Monrovia but was able to visit him on a couple of occasions. Bainda joined the United Nations and escaped the violence in Liberia by traveling to the United States. Once there, he applied for a political asylum to remain in America, and after it was granted he began the process of applying for a visa for Melvin to join him in the United States. Back in Liberia, Melvin was facing the dangers of the Civil War on a daily basis – even being held at gunpoint one morning. When he finally received word that his visa had been approved, his mother took him to the airport. Melvin’s mother told him that she’d be coming with him to America, but ultimately she had to remain behind because she did not obtain a visa. Melvin found himself alone on a plane headed to the United States, and he did not know when he’d see his mother again.