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Hopkins Family Becomes Complete Through Adoption

Missy, Zech and Will Hopkins at Zech's first Ole Miss football game.
Missy, Zech and Will Hopkins at Zech’s first Ole Miss football game.

Foster care can be a worthy cause as people open up their homes to the children who in need. Will and Missy Hopkins believed that. They wanted to open their door, their hearts, to such a child.

Will Hopkins creates custom-made furniture at The Green Door Company. Missy Crosby Hopkins is the director of marketing at Merit Health Batesville Hospital. They both knew that it was time to bring a child into their lives soon, and they also knew that the adoption process can be difficult.

After almost three years of working with private adoption agencies they supplemented their efforts of becoming parents by contacting DHS. They were ready, and within months they met their son, Zech.

They went through a lengthy process to become licensed foster parents in involvement with the Children and Family Services in Lafayette County. It was then that a social worker asked them to meet a child she had watched over for three years.

They drove out to Houston, Mississippi to meet him. That visitation changed their lives.

“As soon as we walked in it was instant,” said Missy. “We knew right away this was the child that was meant to be ours.”

“We brought him home on October 29, and our life as a family began,” said Will.

Houston Elementary School on Oct. 29, 2015 – the day Will and Missy brought their son home.
Houston Elementary School on Oct. 29, 2015 – the day Will and Missy brought their son home.

That day was a perfect day to bring Zech home, just in time for the Hopkins to celebrate Zech’s eighth birthday and the holidays together. Will and Missy had their first Mother’s and Father’s Days with Zech this year, and they will have many more years of celebrating those days.

The Hopkins also celebrated June 30, the day they legally adopted Zech. Will and Missy feel tremendously honored to be his parents, and couldn’t help but remark at how everything seemingly fell into place the day they brought Zech home.

Will said that after the first few weeks with Zech they found out that he has family in Oxford. So, Zech truly came home to both the Hopkins and his biological family after being in the foster care system.

“We bring Zech over to hang out with them because they’re also his family,” said Missy.

Zech also attends Oxford Elementary School with his fraternal twin brother. There at the school Zech was recognized with a star student award in second grade.

Zech and Missy around Christmastime
Zech and Missy around Christmastime

Recently, the Hopkins family discovered another impressive coincidence: James Meredith. They were in Jackson when Missy noticed James Meredith sitting at a table behind Zech.

She thought of her parents who were students at the University of Mississippi when Meredith enrolled. Her father, Buddy Crosby, was a football player on the 1962 championship team under Coach John Vaught. Will’s father was in the National Guard, and he was posted to the edge of the campus to search all vehicles for weapons. She and Will often sat with Zech at Meredith’s statue and told him of Meredith’s determination and courage during a turning point in history.

Missy said, “I told Zech that the story of the brave man that was the first black student at Ole Miss is right behind him in person sitting at a table. As my little boy and James Meredith were giving fist bumps to one another I was heart struck with a rise of pride and hope in realizing that in just two generations removed from my parents and Mr. Meredith being co-eds together at Ole Miss and Will’s father stationed with a task to prevent violence during a time that was one of the most historic representations of racial divide to current day when I see my son who is the same race as Mr. Meredith look back at me to say ‘This is really him, Mommy! This is the brave man we that we visit the statue of!’”

Zech was bouncing with pride as they visited “Coach,” his nickname for Missy’s father, Buddy Crosby. He said to him, “Coach, we met James Meredith at the grocery store!” Crosby then told him that Meredith lived across the Meadowbrook Road from the house Missy grew up in, another impressive coincidence that struck Missy who reflected on that day.

Missy said, “It is not often that I am conscious of the difference of race in my son and myself but at the moment I was mindful of the dark skin of my boy and the light skin of my own and felt such a powerful unity in the difference. The three people in the exchange were of three different generations, two different races and yet we were the same. Not the same in accomplishments or storied pasts but same in the sense of being humans representing our own selves and respecting that in each other.”

Missy and Zech at the 2015 Grove Bowl
Missy and Zech at the 2015 Grove Bowl

Anyone who has met Zech might say that he is radiating with joy; he isn’t afraid to be affectionate with his new parents, and they return his love tenfold.

Their family and friends in Oxford also welcomed Zech into the community. When Missy posted on her Facebook in celebration of adopting Zech, nearly 500 people liked her status. Many commented, expressing their joy and praises over Zech becoming a Hopkins.

Missy remarked in an email that she “teared up 100 times” thinking about all the love they were shown that day.

“Together we have it all,” said Will. He said that one of his favorite pictures of Zech has him embracing both of Will and Missy’s fathers, all smiling. To him, Zech’s arrival seems like fate. June 30 is a good date for him to remember Zech’s adoption because it falls close to the anniversary of the day Will lost his sister, but the joy of being Zech’s father helps him cope with the hard anniversary.

Missy encourages anyone to go into foster care. To her, there’s a chance parents looking to adopt will find a great match in the system and even if not, they’ll still provide a home for children without one.

The Hopkins family might grow by one more. Zech is excited at the possibility.

He said with a wide grin, “I’m ready for a baby brother!”

Either way, the Hopkins family has more than enough joy for a lifetime in their home.

Zech and Will all cuddled up at home.
Zech and Will all cuddled up at home.

Callie Daniels Bryant is the senior managing editor at HottyToddy.com. She can be reached at callie.daniels@hottytoddy.com.

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