" he abandoned his new family in favor of walking more than 600 miles on foot to reunite with his blood-kin.

While up north, he managed to establish a new home for his wife and children near his brother, even saving up a modest nest egg to bring them to Canada. This process took 11 years.

Upon returning to fetch his family, Sukanen found that not only had his love died in a flu epidemic during his absence, but their children had been separated from one another, placed in foster homes, and his old farm lay in ruin. After tracking down his only son, the two made for the Canadian border only for the boy to be rejected and sent back to his foster home."
No communication, support or foundation for your family- you leave for over a decade- and you expect everything to be fine and dandy when you get back?

Sounds like the dad that shows up at the end of Waterboy.

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