The New York Times warmed hearts around the web Thursday, when it published the first-person account of a gay couple who found a day-old infant in a subway station, took the baby home, and ended up adopting and raising the boy.
Screenwriter Peter Mercurio opens his story with a scene from his wedding to his husband Danny, a social worker, last July, noting that their son, Kevin, was proudly standing beside his dads as they tied the knot. But the story began 12 years earlier, writes Mercurio.
"Danny called me that day, frantic," recounts Mercurio. "'I found a baby!' he shouted. 'I called 911, but I don’t think they believed me. No one’s coming. I don’t want to leave the baby alone. Get down here and flag down a police car or something.' By nature Danny is a remarkably calm person, so when I felt his heart pounding through the phone line, I knew I had to run."
"When I got to the A/C/E subway exit on Eighth Avenue, Danny was still there, waiting for help to arrive. The baby, who had been left on the ground in a corner behind the turnstiles, was light-brown skinned and quiet, probably about a day old, wrapped in an oversize black sweatshirt."
Child services eventually took custody of "Baby ACE," as the boy was nicknamed. But three months later, Mercurio was caught off guard by a judge's question as the couple testified about how they discovered the infant.
"Suddenly, the judge asked, 'Would you be interested in adopting this baby?'" recounts Mercurio. "The question stunned everyone in the courtroom, everyone except for Danny, who answered, simply, 'Yes.'"
In several heart-warming twists of fate, the couple was rushed through the adoption process, and had Baby ACE, who became Kevin, in their home by Christmastime.
The judge who asked Danny that infamous question and helped the couple navigate the legal hurdles of adopting a child as a gay couple long before such things were commonplace, helped the family come full-circle when she performed Mercurio's wedding ceremony last year. Read the whole story here.