Mother Finds New Joy In Adoption After Son’s Death - | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Mother Finds New Joy In Adoption After Son’s Death

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by Marcus Washington

SPRINGFIELD, Tenn. - When her youngest child died in a vehicle accident she said it nearly destroyed the life she knew. During the first Christmas without her son, she received a gift she said was sent from God and her son.

It's been more than a year since Lori Gregory faced the worst fear any parent can have: burying her child.

Her son, JR, was killed in a head on collision in May of 2010.

"It was absolutely miserable," said Gregory. The thought of Christmas, the thought of Thanksgiving, the thought of any holiday. I didn't want to think about it them. I didn't want to celebrate them and I didn't want to put a tree up. I didn't even want to think about it."

Her story moved an entire community and on Christmas Eve at a friend's party, just months after her son's death; a woman she didn't know who was 9-months- pregnant offered her the gift that would change her world.

"She told me she was carrying a little girl and she needed a good home for her daughter and she thought we would make great parents. That we were the pick," said Gregory.

During a time she felt she couldn't escape her son's death; the very thing her son always wanted was about to bring joy back into this family's life.

"I know without a doubt in my mind that God and my little angel son up there has something to do with that. He felt he needed my son home for something, so he took that angle, but he brought me another one," said Gregory.

Just 33 days after getting the news, baby Erica Ray was delivered into the Gregory family's lives.

For the past 11 months, the baby has brought joy that one mother never thought she would get back.

"The minute I start to cry or start to think about something, this little girl will chuckle out a laugh and I find myself laughing again," said Gregory. "It seems that Christmas has a whole new meaning."

Sunday will be the second Christmas Lori will celebrate without her son, but this year she said she has a gift she believes her son has something to do with.

Erica's adoption became final on August 18 and Gregory said she will never keep her adoption a secret.

The family said she took her first three solo steps on Tuesday.

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