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Couple adopts adorable baby left behind at fire station when he was just two days old


By Fiona LeishmanUS News Reporter

18:23, 22 Jan 2024


Baby Samuel was left at a fire station in Louisville, Kentucky, two years ago, and after a lengthy adoption process the couple that spotted his story and 'prayed' they'd be asked to help can call him their son


The Tylers have made sure to keep the fire station involved in Samuel's life, celebrating milestones with them (Image: Heather Shay Photography)


It's been almost two years since a couple were sitting at home when they read a news story about a newborn baby who had been surrendered to a local fire station, now, that little boy is their adopted son.


Chris and Brittany Tyler were at their home in Louisville, Kentucky, when they read about the newborn boy who had been surrendered under the state's Safe Infants Act. The Act provides designated safe spaces for parents to leave babies up to the age of 30 days old with no penalties.


That was two years ago, and last month, the couple adopted the baby they had read about, a boy who they called Samuel. Speaking to Good Morning America, Chris said: "He's been part of our family from day one."



Baby Samuel was left at the Louisville fire station when he was just two days old (

Image: Heather Shay Photography)


Samuel, who is almost two now, apparently loves hugs and Mickey Mouse, according to his parents. Chris explained he and his wife became foster parents almost seven years ago after they had struggled for years with infertility.


The couple already have two other adopted sons, aged five and seven. But, they said when they first read the news story about the tiny baby left at the fire station they "prayed and hoped" they would be asked to take in the baby.


Lieutenant Colonel Bobby Cooper, assistant chief for the Louisville Fire Department, explained firefighters at a Louisville station were in the middle of a shift change around 8am on May 12, 2022, when the doorbell rang. They opened the door to find a newborn baby tucked up in a box along with a note from his biological mother.



Samuel was just two days old when he was left at the fire station, a safe space, tucked up in a box with a note ( Image: Heather Shay Photography)


"The [firefighters] notified emergency transportation, EMS, to be able to transport Samuel to a local children's hospital, to get him checked out and make sure that he was healthy and that he got the proper care he needed," Lieutenant Colonal Cooper told Good Morning America. He added: "Our firefighters did a tremendous job of handling it and notifying the appropriate authorities."


Just days later, the Tylers prayers were answered when they received a call while out on a walk with their older sons asking them to foster the baby. The next day, the couple was holding Samuel in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) of a local hospital.


"He was in the NICU for a couple of weeks because he was ready to come home [because] he was so small," said Brittany. She added that Samuel weighed just three pounds when he arrived a the hospital, but that the couple were "able to visit him in the NICU that entire time."



When Chris, pictured, and Brittany heard about Samuel's story they prayed they would be asked to help ( Image:GMA)



Just days after reading Samuel's story, the couple were called and asked to step in as foster parents ( Image:GMA)


When Brittany and Chris brought Samuel home on June 2, 2022, they said the tot "fit right in" with the family. Brittany recalled: "The other kids absolutely loved him. We had another foster baby at the time who was only a few months older, and they became buddies right away."


As Samuel was surrendered under the Safe Infants Act, the couple knew early on that, barring any unforeseen circumstances, Samuel would be able to be adopted, instead of being a more common, shorter-term foster placement. Now, after almost two years of making their way through the adoption process, Samuel was officially adopted by the Tylers on December 18, 2023.


In a family tradition, following the adoption ceremony the couple said they took baby Samuel to Build-A-Bear, where he made a firefighter bear. They said it's just one way that they have worked to keep Samuel's birth story at the forefront.



It took two years for the Tylers to go through the adoption process to legally adopt Samuel (

Image:GMA)



Chris and Brittany already had two adopted sons ( Image:Heather Shay Photography)


Since his birth, the family has visited the fire station here Samuel was left and celebrated milestones there, including his first birthday. Chris said: "We've got a great photo of the firemen that were on duty that day holding him, and we're talking about these huge guys.. and just massive smiles. [They] know that there's a special connection between Samuel and that fire station, and with them particularly."


And it's not just Chris and Brittany, the firefighters have also made sure Samuel has a connection to his story. They even gave his adoptive parents the note left for their son when he was surrendered, who said they are saving it to show him as he gets older.



The Tylers have said they will share the note left by Samuel's biological mother with him when he's older ( Image:GMA)



Chris and Brittany said Samuel fit right in with their family ( Image:Heather Shay Photography)


Lieutenant Colonel Cooper said the Louisville Fire Department is "incredibly proud" of the role they played in Samuel's story. Adding: "We've been lucky that his parents and his family allowed us to continue to be a part of his story, bringing him by the firehouse for his birthday and letting him know that the local fire department is a part of his life story. And we hope that they continue to do so."


The fire chief said he hopes baby Samuel and the Tylers' story will help to raise awareness of safe haven laws, a version of which exists in all 50 states, allowing for the safe surrender of newborns in a protected environment. He said: "It's an imperfect world, and we don't have perfect solutions for every situation, but this is another option for a mum. If a mum finds herself in a crisis situation and needs a haven for an infant, this is another resource that's available."



Chris and Brittany have been foster parents for years ( Image:GMA)



The couple are hoping that sharing their story will help raise awareness of the Safe Infants Act and fostering and adoption ( Image:GMA)


The Tylers also said they hope that by sharing their story it can raise awareness for not only safe haven options but the need for fostering and adoption. Chris said as Samuel gets older, he and his wife plan to tell their son the incredible story of everyone involved in his becoming part of their family.


"We really want to let him know that somebody loved him even though they weren't going to be with him for his whole life," said Chris. "That [his biological mum] loved him and wanted the best for him, and she trusted that he would go to a good place, and we're thankful to God that he came to us."


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