Finally A Family
Dozens of foster children adopted by families in single ceremony.
Dozens of Florida foster children now have a permanent home.
A mass adoption took place Friday as part of National Adoption Awareness Month.
It was a day of firsts for 17-year-old Mercy Miller.
It was the first day she was able to officially have a family of her own.
"I love them and I'm so thankful for everything they do," she said.
It was also the first day she'll go by her new name Mercy.
It's a name she said chose her, a name that reflects the mercy god showed by sending her a new family.
A name her new parents weren't so sure about at first.
"She said I've really been thinking about it and my new name will speak truth about my past so we couldn't argue with that," Mercy's adoptive mother, Brandy Miller said.
This was a day Mercy says she feared would never come, but she and 16 other children were officially adopted Friday in a Collier County courtroom.
"When we met her we just knew she was ours even though she was taller than me," Brandy said.
A little boy named Gauge was one of those kids.
He's now reunited with his other siblings, now that their biological grandmother has become their adoptive mother.
"I prayed about it and I just said this is something I have to do. I had three kids and I was happy with the three. But when I thought about the fourth one being out there, I couldn't not do it," grandmother and new parent Pam Alvey said.
Gauge and Mercy's stories are similar to thousands more expected to be adopted this month.