A recently adopted 10-year-old boy from Kentucky has a new home just in time for the holidays. During his adoption hearing on Tuesday, to make the moment even more unforgettable, he changed his name to honor his role model, Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson.
Darius Russell Wilson Birt was given the opportunity to change his last name and took advantage of the opportunity by changing his middle name, too, according to Lex18.
Darius said he decided to change his name in honor of Wilson because "he's a good scrambler and a good quarterback and he's Christian so that's why I picked Wilson," he said.
Hey, @DangeRussWilson! This adorable 10-year-old boy was just adopted by his foster parents in Nicholasville, KY & decided to change his middle name to "Wilson" because he says you're his hero! I'm sure he'd love a shout out! pic.twitter.com/ARI0EXFFWp
— Kristen Edwards (@kedwards_tv) December 20, 2019
His new parents said they loved Darius' decision and think Wilson is a great role model for him.
"He's a pillar of his community," Robert Birt said. "He's actually a leader on his team. He's one of the best quarterbacks ever and he's a great person and for him to have that role model. It's very important."
The Birt family grew up in Washington and have also been Seahawks fans since 1978.
Before being adopted, the elementary student had a tough upbringing. He spent a year in foster care while his birth parents rotated in and out of jail. Consequently, he became familiar with the streets and constant abuse.
"He went from thinking drugs and abuse and everything was the norm. It's not. This kid right here is going to be somebody," Robert said.
Darius' adoptive parents took him in as a foster child in 2018 and ultimately decided to make him a permanent member of their family.
"I had a blast," Darius said reflecting on his adoption. "I couldn't stop smiling. My cheeks were hurting from smiling so much."
He now spends his time playing sports, excelling in school with straight A's and singing on the youth choir, according to King 5.
During his adoption hearing, Darius wore a No. 3 jersey with the name Wilson on the back. His adoptive parents also wore Seahawks gear while accompanying him.
Wilson later got wind of the story and tweeted about Darius and his new family on Saturday.
Love this story! There’s another Russell Wilson and he was adopted by this amazing family!
— Russell Wilson (@DangeRussWilson) December 21, 2019
"Love this story! There’s another Russell Wilson and he was adopted by this amazing family!" the quarterback said.
"From childhood loneliness to love and freedom… this is a story of new starts and overcoming!" he added.
The star athlete ended his tweet with the hashtag #WhyNotYou alluding to his foundation centered around empowering children. Wilson launched the Why Not You Foundation in 2014 and said his dad raised him to have the "Why not you" mentality which he has used to encourage the youth.
In addition to his foundation, Wilson and his wife Ciara make routine visits to the Seattle children's hospital, advocating for pediatric cancer resources.