National Adoption Month

A Grown Man Surprised His Stepdad With A Birthday Gift 30 Years In The Making

"I feel so honored to be a part of this family."


November is National Adoption Month. In honor of the month, we will be bringing attention to the thousands of people in foster care awaiting forever homes, as well as those who provide and advocate for them. These stories emphasize the idea that families are bound together by the love they share, rather than their biological roots.  

When Dave Skaggs celebrated his milestone 60th birthday last month, he received a fittingly landmark gift from his stepson, Joel Glenn.

Per CBS New York, Glenn, now 40, first met Skaggs when he was 10 years old after Skaggs began dating his mother, Pamela. Skaggs remained a constant presence in Glenn's life (and still is) even though it wasn't always easy, and the pair developed an unbreakable bond. They were father and son in every way, just not on paper. 

About a year ago, Glenn, who is the youngest of five siblings, and his wife, Sommer Anne, began hearing about adult adoptions and decided to surprise Skaggs with papers that would confirm what his heart has known for decades — Glenn is his son. "In August we talked with Joel's mom, Pamela Skaggs, and decided that it would be a fun and special gift to give him [Dave] for his 60th Birthday coming up in October," Sommer Anne told 1010 WINS.

When Dave married Pamela, he "took on a lot of responsibility," Sommer Anne explained to the outlet. "The kids had not had an easy childhood, and Dave stepped up to the plate big time. When he was a teenager, Joel wasn't the best to Dave. He gave him a real hard time."

Still, Sommer Anne added, "Through the years, Joel's love and respect for Dave has just kept growing."

And so with cameras rolling, the family sat in anticipation as Skaggs opened his one-of-a-kind gift, which also came with a heartfelt letter from Glenn in which he thanked Skaggs for teaching him, loving him, and being "the man that I most respect." Watch Skaggs' emotional reaction above.

According to Sommer Anne, the adoption papers caught Skaggs completely off guard. "And we had no idea his reaction would be so intense, and so beautiful. It was a wonderful night," she concluded. "I feel so honored to be a part of this family — to be Joel's wife and Dave's daughter in law."

If Skaggs' speechlessness was any indication, we'd say he's thrilled to be formally adopting Glenn, now a father himself, after three decades of memories, lessons, and love.


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