DALLAS - When Texas boy Ke'onte Cook was 10 years old, he didn't think he'd ever find a home that would be his forever. But one beloved Dallas newswoman helped turn things around, and this week, Ke'onte brought tears to her eyes with a surprise on-air.
ABC affiliate WFAA in Dallas reports Ke'onte was 8 years old in 2007 when Gloria Campos featured him as a child of the week - one who had already learned the golden rule.
"Treat people the way you want to be treated," he said.
Following a failed adoption and a lot of disappointment, Gloria did another report on the boy two years later, hoping the second time would be the charm.
"I've been moved to different homes, and the adoption didn't go so well," Ke'onte said in 2009.
But now, he's singing a different tune.
"If someone said (they would offer me) money for (my) parents, I'd say, 'Heck no!' because they are worth more than what you've got!" Ke'onte recently said.
Carol and Scott Cook saw Ke'onte on WFAA in 2009 during his second appearance. The couple says they knew right away: He was their son.
"He just spoke to us through the video," Scott said. "Just seemed like he was talking to us."
Two years ago, the boy went before Congress to speak about his 4 years in foster care, where he said he was over-medicated with mind-altering drugs.
Today, Ke'onte is a healthy young man completely off medication who runs, hikes and loves to dance. He said he knows this all might not have happened without Gloria's persistence in finding him parents.
"I want to say to her, 'Thank you so much, because you've made my life worthwhile and you've helped me become the person that I am right now,'" he said.
And he got that chance.
Watch the video below to see Ke'onte surprise Gloria with a tearful, joyful reunion at the end of the clip. (Mobile users, tap here to watch.)
The story is just another testament to Gloria Campos' long, inspiring career in Dallas. Campos announced her retirement recently, handing down the reins of anchor to Cynthia Izaguirre, who wrote this story. We congratulate Gloria on her dedication and years of service.