JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- It's National Adoption Awareness Month. One local family opened their doors to share what they call their "many blessings."
It's a day to give thanks. But for the Salzwedel family, it's much more than that. Grandfather Rod Salzwedel said, "It was the greatest blessing we ever had in our lives." He is so full of joy, because he started a family tradition that his children have carried on: adoption.
He explained, "I'm just so pleased at my kids turned out and how their love for their adopted children turned out."
Rod's adoptive son David married Kimberly. "I am the only person in our house not adopted," she said laughing.
Then, over the years, they adopted Taryn, Grant and their newest baby, Leighton, who is turning one today, the same day David was born 42 years ago. The proud father said, "Kind of definitely know who is going to take center stage at this point. A one year old has certainly got the attention versus a 42 year old."
And David explained the dates to remember don't stop there. 6-year-old Taryn's birth had an extra special meaning for this family. "In the evening they had to do an emergency c-section and she told the doctor to wait to start the c-section after midnight so she could be born on September 8th, because she knew how important that day would be to take a tragedy like my mom's passing and give us a gift," he said.
Grandpa Rod said his other adopted child, who lives in Wisconsin also opened up her home and life to kids in need adopting four children. Now this family wants to share their joy with others who are thinking of expanding their families. "If there are people out there thinking that there are not children available that if they pursue the option, there are so many children who are looking," David said.
David recently lost his job. But he said he is still thankful to have so many blessings in his life during such an important time of the year.
First Coast News