Family and friends mark toddler’s adoption with parade of cars


BRADENTON, Fla. (WFTS/CNN) - After waiting years to adopt a child, a Florida family couldn’t get their day in court.

The formal proceedings were postponed because of coronavirus, but with the help of friends, neighbors and first responders, they still found a special way to celebrate.

Three-year-old Reney has been waiting for the Wilsons to adopt her since she was seven weeks old, just like they adopted her older biological sister.

“We’ve just been waiting to complete our family,” Linndsey Wilson said.

When they found out Reney wouldn’t be getting her adoption day in court, they were disappointed.

“Because of COVID-19, we don’t get that. She doesn’t get that. We don’t get those pictures to really explain what adoption is,” Wilson said.

She asked family and friends to drive by and show support for Reney.

“So I put the word out, and I was like, ‘OK, there’s five cars, so maybe we can get a few more.’ And we were not expecting this at all, and it’s just so special,” Wilson said.

One More Child, a foster and adoption advocacy organization, says though COVID-19 has put a lot of cases on hold, they’ve had higher numbers of people interested in fostering.

“There’s just an empathy that we have nationally and locally that maybe sometimes we just fast forward too quickly through their lives to really appreciate. People are asking the really in-depth questions about foster care right now,” R.J. Walter said

That same kind of empathy was shown by dozens of friends, strangers and first responders who lined the street, showing their support and love for Reney’s new forever family.

“This was super special and amazing,” Wilson said.

If you’d like to learn more about fostering a child, go to onemorechild.org.

Copyright 2020 WFTS via CNN. All rights reserved.