24 children adopted ahead of Mother’s Day

Adoption event held at Duval County Courthouse

Two dozen area foster children became permanent members of their new families on Friday -- just in time for Mother’s Day.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Two dozen area foster children became permanent members of their new families on Friday -- just in time for Mother’s Day.

During the adoption event hosted by Family Support Services and Judge Michael Kalil at the Duval County Courthouse, 24 adoptions were finalized.

Kalil, who presides over local adoptions, said he was honored to help these foster children find their forever homes and excited for those mothers who will have an extra special Mother’s Day this year.

“I’m thrilled to see so many children start their new lives at this ceremony,” Kalil said. “We’re finalizing these adoptions just in time for the families to celebrate all the wonderful mothers this Sunday. And, we’re very excited to be resuming our annual Mother’s Day adoption event with the first such event in-person at the courthouse since the start of the pandemic.”

An adoption event took place at the Duval County Courthouse on Friday. (Copyright 2022 by WJXT News4JAX - All rights reserved.)

Eleven families adopted the 24 children.

Molly and Geoffrey Lane adopted a group of three siblings and another group of four siblings. The children range in age from 2 to 12. The Lanes are foster parents who are committed to keeping siblings together whenever possible, FSS said.

Single mother Morgan Butler adopted two sibling boys, ages 11 and 12.

“It wasn’t something I really planned out, it kind of just happened this way, and I’m totally cool with it,” Butler said. “They just came into my life at a good time and it just, it all worked out.”

And Carolyn Walker adopted her grandchildren, ages 11 and 5. The younger child was Kalil’s honorary bailiff for the event.

“They’re taking on a big responsibility, but we’re very excited because we know those kids are gonna be in a safe and stable home,” Kalil said. “It’ll be beautiful.”

FSS has finalized 235 adoptions this fiscal year. The nonprofit is working to find families for more than 300 other children still in the foster care system.


About the Authors:

At WJXT for a quarter of a century, Mary Baer anchors the 5, 6 and 10 p.m. news weekdays.