GARDEN GROVE (CBSLA.com) — There was a special reunion at Station 6 in Garden Grove on Sunday, as a boy who turns 1 on Monday was reunited with the firefighters who received him one year ago.
Caleb was given up late last December as part of California’s Safe Surrender program, which allows parents to legally give up their babies 3 days old or younger at any fire station or hospital, no questions asked.
CBS2’s Laurie Perez was on hand for Sunday’s reunion.
“He seems like he’s a great little guy,” said Capt. Tony Acosta, who was on duty with Paramedic Ryan Van Wie the night the child’s birth mother dropped him off.
Acosta remembered being called to the station floor by his engineer when the child was surrendered.
“‘Hey Cap, there’s a lady dropping off a baby,’ and both of us…he had this expression on his face like, ‘What?'” Acosta said.
“Maybe if he might not have had a chance before, now he’s got a great chance to do well in life and prosper,” added Van Wie.
The first time Caleb was at the fire station he was 2 hours old, and his parents, who adopted him through Orange County Social Services, brought him back to visit the place and the people he spent his actual birth day with on Sunday.
“She couldn’t take care of him, but this was the most loving thing she could do for him at the time,” said his dad, Christopher.
The boy’s mom addressed her thoughts to his birth mother.
“Caleb will grow up knowing that you’re a hero and that we love you,” said his mother, Kimberly. “And that if you ever want to find us someday, that we are absolutely open to that, because the more people that love him, the better.”
California’s Safe Surrender program was established in 2001, Perez reported, and since that time 669 babies have been safely and legally surrendered.