Happy ending

After being involuntarily stranded in France for over a year, local filmmaker is allowed to return home

After being detained unexpectedly in France for 15 months while he wrangled with U.S. immigration authorities over his right to return to his home in Chico, French-born documentary filmmaker Gerard Ungerman stepped off the plane at San Francisco International Airport on Oct. 12, to the delight and relief of his longtime partner Stacey Wear and her two daughters.

Thanks to the help of some “excellent” immigration attorneys, Ungerman (pictured at SFO with Wear) received a notice in September that his immigrant visa had been approved, Wear wrote in a recent email. His green card is “on its way,” she added.

“We are just taking it day by day, letting it soak in—asking ourselves pretty much daily if this is actually real,” said Wear. “We are finished with this ordeal?? Is Gerard really here permanently? And now, finally, the answer is yes!!”