A Father's Dying Wish

By Bryan Holley

Our daughter, Jackie, and her older sister were wards of the State through the Department of Social Services; taken into custody due to evidence of abuse and neglect.  At that time, their mother was expecting her third child.  At birth, DSS gave the new baby to our pastor and family for fostering as they were a licensed foster family.  My wife and I, along with a lady from our church, and our pastor’s family offered support in any way we could; providing food, taking the children to the park, or whatever else we could do to help.  

As time transpired, the mother abandoned the children, and their father developed cancer.  He did everything he could to take care of them, but the girls’ visits with us soon became overnight stays, then weekends, and eventually weeks while he was recovering.  

As life would have it, the father passed away.  However, before his passing, he asked us if we would be willing to "love" his girls as he did, and keep them permanently.  He asked DSS if he could sign his rights over to us.  (From personal experience, I came from a broken home in which a father wanted nothing to do with us.  My mother passed away with cancer when I was 18.  For the longest time, I questioned why my life happened the way it did. Now I know...God was preparing me for such a time as this.)  The girls’ father passed away peacefully knowing that his daughters were going to be loved, cared for, and would always be together.      

We all feel blessed beyond measure to have these precious little girls in our care.  

Bryan Holley and family