An 18-year-old finally has a forever home after spending more than 13 years in the foster care system.
Carson Petersen of Fresno, Calif., was adopted by his foster parents, Tex and Renee Petersen, on July 7.
Carson first entered the foster care system when he was just 3 years old, after his mother took her own life, ABC News reports. When he was 8, he was placed in the care of his biological father but was returned to foster care after spending several years homeless.
Carson was placed under the care of Tex and Renee Petersen three years ago. The couple agreed to adopt him when he asked earlier this year.
“They never gave up on me,” Carson told the Fresno Bee. “I put them through hell, and we just never gave up on each other.”
“Carson, he’s a really good, young man — he loves to help people, and that’s what I think I love about him most,” Renee told ABC News. “I’m just so proud that we finally can make it official.”
Tex and Renee have one biological son. They decided to foster children when they found out they couldn’t have more kids of their own. Of the four children they have fostered, the couple adopted has three.
They told the Fresno Bee they would have adopted the fourth if the child’s biological sister hadn’t requested custody.
Carson is grateful to finally have a forever family.
“We always did things together. They always called me son. They introduced me as their son to everybody,” said Carson. “They never said ‘foster son,’ which was pretty awesome to feel wanted and appreciated.”