Midland City's Ethan visits Alabama governor - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Midland City's Ethan visits Alabama governor

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Governor Robert Bentley draws with Ethan in the governor's office (Source: Governor's Press Office) Governor Robert Bentley draws with Ethan in the governor's office (Source: Governor's Press Office)
Ethan and his mother visit Alabama Governor Robert Bentley and his wife Diane Bentley at the Alabama Capitol. (Source: Governor's Press Office) Ethan and his mother visit Alabama Governor Robert Bentley and his wife Diane Bentley at the Alabama Capitol. (Source: Governor's Press Office)
Governor Bentley and State Senator Harri Anne Smith watch as Ethan draws a picture in the governor's office. (Source: Governor's Press Office) Governor Bentley and State Senator Harri Anne Smith watch as Ethan draws a picture in the governor's office. (Source: Governor's Press Office)
Ethan poses for a photo while hiding under Governor Robert Bentley's desk (Source: Governor's Press Office) Ethan poses for a photo while hiding under Governor Robert Bentley's desk (Source: Governor's Press Office)
MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) -

The child a nation knows as "Ethan" and his mother, Jennifer Kirkland, visited Alabama's capital city Wednesday where they met with Montgomery Mayor Todd Strange and then with Governor Robert Bentley.

Mayor Strange's office said the mother and child visited with each other for a short time. Ethan was given several gifts including material from the Montgomery Zoo and the Montgomery Chamber gift shop.

They met with Governor Bentley for approximately 30 minutes, according to his staff. Governor Bentley gave the child a special coin, a Frisbee, crayons a hat and T-shirt.

While no photographs of Mayor Strange's meeting were taken, several were taken with Governor Bentley and released to the media.

Ethan was kidnapped by Jimmy Lee Dykes from the school bus he was riding home from a Dale County school on January 29, 2013. Dykes fatally shot the boy's bus driver, Charles Poland, Jr.

Authorities negotiated for the child's release from the underground bunker for 143 hours before FBI agents felt they had no choice but to initiate a raid. Dykes was killed in a gunfight, but Ethan was not physically injured.

Ethan's family has not granted any local interviews, but they recently sat down for a national interview with TV psychiatrist Dr. Phil. Ms. Kirkland told Dr. Phil that she's forgiven Dykes for holding her son captive.

ON THE WEB: Coverage of Midland City hostage crisis

Copyright 2013 WSFA 12 News.  All rights reserved.

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