The impact of a loving family on a child can't be underestimated. In fact, it can be the foundation to a successful life. This month we are doing special reports on prominent people in our community who many of you know, but what you might not know, is they were adopted. We begin tonight, with the story of a successful East Texas businessman in KLTV 7's Gift of Love report.
A little red haired, blue eyed baby was placed in an Ireland Orphanage. He lay in a metal crib waiting for someone to love him. "And I'm sure I was there waving going, pick me, pick me."
He would soon find an American family willing to raise him as their own. They would call him Robert James Peltier. "They taught me to say, and think, that I was chosen. I was specifically chosen, and it made me feel special. I remember at 6 or 7 when my parents said, "That your mother loved you so much that she knew she couldn't take care of you, so, she gave you to us.'"
A year after Robert was adopted, his parents made a trip back to that same orphanage, returning with another boy. Robert now had a brother. He believes adoption is a calling. "I think you should be prayerful about it and ask the Lord what do you chose for me Lord and listen to him," says Robert.
He believes God had a plan for him, blessing him with a family who believed in him. "They were just really good parents. They were solid core so no matter how people tried to shake me, or shape me, it was because of these parents. They instilled such character and leadership that I'm just so proud of them."
Robert's parents are very proud of him, too. He became a successful businessman, starting up his own auto dealership, and winning several awards. But perhaps even more rewarding, is his family. He has a loving wife and four beautiful children.
Robert says it was his time as an adopted child that helped him become the parent that he is today. "I think I'm a better dad for it. I think I'm so in tune with my child. I struggle just like any other parent, but I will absolutely put that first before anything else. I love my kids."
Robert's upbringing also taught him to give back. Among other things, he gives of his time to the Boys and Girls Club of East Texas. "It just rips my heart out to see a child in need. You know all that child wants is a chance and I think that's why I try to help this Boys and Girls club. They don't want anything special, they just want a chance to be like everybody else." Robert goes on to say, "When I'm having a tough day or week I'll go over there and I realize, God this is so wonderful and my cup gets filled. So, I feel like I'm helping them but, really, they're helping me."
Robert James Peltier is now living the American dream thanks to two strangers, who gave him the Gift of Love and encouragement to succeed. "I wouldn't be where I am without them. I love them. They're the best! There just isn't enough you can do to thank them for giving you a whole life."
Gillian Sheridan reporting. firstname.lastname@example.org