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A couple flying home with their adopted infant surprised with an impromptu in-flight baby shower

The couple was experiencing all the jitters of first-time parents when their co-passengers and flight attendants surprised them with the heartwarming gesture.

A couple flying home with their adopted infant surprised with an impromptu in-flight baby shower
Image Source: RyanJLane/Getty

Dustin and Caren Moore went through nine long years of fertility treatments, miscarriages, and stressful adoption formalities before they finally got to fly home with their adopted baby girl. With the 8-day-old infant safely bundled up, as they took a flight home to California from Colorado—where their daughter was born—the Moores were experiencing all the jitters of first-time parents. Little did they know that the strangers on board the Southwest Airlines flight with them would do something so special and heartwarming that it would make the beginning of their parenting journey a million times more memorable.


When he had a rather difficult week earlier this month, rather take out his frustration online, Dustin decided to share the faith-in-humanity-restoring story on Twitter. Not too long ago, my wife and I boarded a @SouthwestAir flight with our recently adopted infant daughter. [With] clearance to return home to California, my wife carried our precious bundle, while I offered numerous apologies to passengers while maneuvering the aisle with 4 bags. About mid-flight, our daughter awoke and politely informed us she wanted a new diaper. After inquiring about space for a table change, a thoughtful flight attendant (named Jenny) cleared a space in the back of the plane and gave us privacy, he began.


After a change, Jenny and another passenger complimented my beautiful daughter and politely asked what had prompted a flight with such a young infant. I gave them the shortened adoption story, to which they hastily offered congratulations, and shared a few more kind remarks, Dustin continued. About 10 minutes later, another attendant (named Bobby) greeted us w/ a warm smile and inquired about our daughter. We repeated the story w/ a few details, and he congratulated us before walking away. My wife and I exchanged curious looks but thought nothing more about it

Speaking to The Washington Post about the incident, the 33-year-old said, "Five minutes later, Bobby came on the intercom and said, 'Ladies and gentlemen, there's a very special guest on the flight today. She's only 8 days old and she's traveling home with her mom and dad.'" The entire cabin erupted with applause for the little one and her new parents, with many turning around to personally congratulate the couple. However, Bobby wasn't done. He then shared that the crew would pass out pens and napkins to everyone, and anybody who wanted to share a word of advice or encouragement for our family was welcome to do so, Dustin tweeted.

"We had no expectation they would have done something like that. I get choked up thinking about it," he admitted. Many passengers shared heartwarming words of encouragement and support for the couple. One napkin read: I was adopted 64 years ago. Thank you for giving this child a loving family to be part of. Us adopted kids need a little extra love. Congratulations. Another passenger wrote: Enjoy every minute. It goes by sooo very fast.


Bobby and Jenny approached us with the napkins bundled up (about 60 of them), [with] a set of pilot wings for our daughter. We learned they were married, and that someone had done a similar act for them on their honeymoon flight, Dustin revealed. When I had spoken [with] Jenny, she thought it was a perfect opportunity to pay forward the kind act they had been shown on their honeymoon. Even as we disembarked, people kept approaching us and wishing us well, and complimenting our beautiful daughter. Our hearts were full.

What all of those perfect strangers and attendants did not know, was the emotionally tender state of two brand-new parents. Parents who after 9 years of trying had been blessed with their first child. Parents who felt scared, but determined in their new role. The outpouring of love from that flight, brought on by the actions of two thoughtfully observant flight attendants... it exceeds my ability to describe what it meant to us. How much those wings and written notes uplifted two new parents determined to love their new daughter, he emotionally wrote. 


For the Moores, who adopted their baby through an agency, the celebration on the plane was almost a sign from heaven after having gone through the stressful and worrisome adoption process. "Adoption is wild with uncertainty. You wonder, is this birth mother going to choose us? What happens if she changes her mind, if she backs out? For an entire crew of strangers to come together like that, to partake like that, to show us that kind of love and kindness meant everything to us," Dustin noted. 


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