In January of 2006, we introduced you to Zachery and Martin on KLTV's Gift of Love report. These two brothers have been in foster care about three years, patiently waiting for just right family to give them a second chance.
"That's when we saw it on the news. I went on the internet and I just fell in love with these two boys. They had a I need a home face, you know," says Brandy Harris.
From that moment, Brandy and Ray Harris began the process to make these boys a part of their family.
"We're not in foster care anymore. We're in a home and my new mom and dad are awesome," says 7 year old Zachery.
Looking at her new boys Brandy says, "Probably the best part has been just to hear 'mom' and, of course, they started calling us mom and dad before they ever moved in." Ray adds, "It's no different than having your own child and what they mean to you."
Martin, 5 years old, too is happy with his new family and it's the little things that make him smile. He says with a big smile, "Peanut butter and and jelly is my favorite sandwich."
After a past filled with abuse, these boys are just now beginning to know a parents love. Zachery needed extra help academically. "They said he's a little bit behind and we're going to put him in a reading class. Now he's about to graduate from his reading class and be up to date actually ahead of a lot of kids in his class and he has confidence," says Ray.
Martin had his own unique challenges. He's believed to be a victim of shaken baby syndrome causing him brain damage. "As soon as we got into the house, his motor skills improved. His speech improved. It was just amazing how he turned around. He did a 360 in probably about six months," says Brandy.
Ray and Brandy were also surprised to learn how little these boys knew about just being kids. "We took them to the playground and we just expected them to go crazy and be on everything and they're looking at us like what do we do with this. They didn't even know what a swing set was."
They also involved the boys in sports and school activities and surrounded them with pets. Martin and Zachery quickly ran down the list of names.
The boys are grateful they got to stay together and now share the Gift of Love in a family they can call their own.
Ray says, "We're the lucky ones. I can't count the ways how lucky we are."
Saturday, May 25 2013 12:11 AM EDT2013-05-25 04:11:25 GMT
Cherokee County authorities are investigating a fatal house fire Friday night. It happened just before 7:30 on County Road 3302 outside of Jacksonville. The Jacksonville Fire Department, Cherokee CountyMore >>
Happened just outside of Jacksonville on Friday night.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 10:21 PM EDT2013-05-25 02:21:23 GMT
From the Tyler Police Department:At approximately 5:20Pm on May 24, 2013, Tyler Police were notified of the motorcycle accident at Grande and Sutherland. The driver of a black Ford F-150 was heading east onMore >>
Rider was not wearing a helmet when she collided with a truck.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 9:59 PM EDT2013-05-25 01:59:21 GMT
A Tyler ISD bus driver was arrested Friday afternoon on drug charges.Ronald Gain, 44, of Tyler, was arrested by the Tyler Police Department on one charge of possession of a controlled substance. TylerMore >>
Has worked for the district since August of 2012.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 7:35 PM EDT2013-05-24 23:35:23 GMT
We have a follow-up on a World War II veteran's headstone found on a bank of the Sabine River. Today, the Kilgore Cemetery administrator found out that Virgil Green was buried in the historical portionMore >>
Today, the Kilgore Cemetery administrator found out that Virgil Green was buried in the historical portion of Danville Cemetery.More >>
Saturday, May 25 2013 12:20 AM EDT2013-05-25 04:20:39 GMT
Fire crews have closed a street in north Tyler as they fight an apartment fire. Several crews are on the scene at an apartment complex in the 700 block of South Kennedy Avenue. The fire started aroundMore >>
Fire crews closed a street in north Tyler as they battled an apartment fire.More >>