CLEVELAND -- On April 14, a fatal fire took away a six-year-old boy's mother and almost took the young child away from his father.
Ramon Mitchell said he was heartbroken when he found out the mother of his child, Charett Allen, was killed in the fire.
"She had to work very early in the morning, so our son was at an aunt's house that night," Mitchell said. "We were such close friends. She was a great mother."
He said the two never married but worked out visitation and support.
"We did everything together, there was never a problem," Mitchell said. "We shopped together, and we just had a great relationship."
Mitchell said they never went to court to establish paternity so he didn't have legal custody of his son.
Shortly after the fire, he took his son to the Cuyahoga County Office of Child Support to do just that.
"I was first told they can't do a paternity test without the mother," Mitchell said. "I was like , huh? I was lost. My son started crying that he wanted to be with his dad and so I started crying. I begged them to please, please do something."
He said the man told him to wait a few minutes and it wasn't long before he met Al Grimes, Director of the Cuyahoga Department of Health and Human Services Fatherhood Initiative.
An emergency custody form was filled out and a DNA test taken to establish paternity.
"We worked together to make sure there was no period of time that the child was separated from the father while all these things got worked out," Grimes said.
Grimes said he is extremely pleased Mitchell and his son are together.
He son is now living with him and his girlfriend, and his other children.
"He is adjusting well. We planted a rose bush in his mother's honor on Mother's Day," Mitchell said. "It makes me proud that I am a father that has an impact on my kids lives."