Family Who Adopted Surrendered Baby on How They're Honoring His Birth Mom: 'He Always Has a Piece of Her'

Brittany and Chris Tyler appeared on 'Today' Friday, along with their now-toddler-aged son Samuel and his older brothers

<p>Heather Shay Photography</p> Brittany, Samuel and Chris Tyler

Heather Shay Photography

Brittany, Samuel and Chris Tyler
  • Kentucky parents Brittany and Chris Tyler appeared on Today Friday

  • The couple, appearing with their three sons, opened up about the adoption of Samuel, who was surrendered to a fire station when he was days old

  • The family is now expanding and the Tylers are in the process of adopting another foster child

The Kentucky parents who adopted a newborn that was surrendered at a fire station are honoring the boy’s birth mother in a special way.

In an appearance on Today Friday, Brittany and Chris Tyler said they’ve saved two items as keepsakes from the day Samuel was left with firefighters.

One is a note from his birth mother, and the other is the blanket in which the days-old baby was swaddled in when he was placed inside a shoebox.

Of the blanket, Brittany said on Today: "I made it into a teddy bear, so that he always has a piece of her.”

Related: Couple Adopts Boy Surrendered at Fire Station as a Newborn: 'He Was an Answered Prayer'

While appearing on the show Friday, Samuel held the multicolored teddy bear while his brothers, Judah and Calvin, showed off another Build-a-Bear teddy bear that was dressed as a firefighter.

Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.

"Samuel is the apple of our eye," Chris told co-hosts Savannah Guthrie and Craig Melvin. "Every day we're just so grateful and thankful that he's here, and we're able to be his parents."

Last month, the Tylers opened up to PEOPLE about their family’s unique story.

Related: Couple Who Adopted and Then Got Pregnant Bring Home Triplets from NICU: 'So Blessed'

After battling infertility for years, the couple began fostering children. They eventually went on to adopt Judah and Calvin, and then they did the same with Samuel after first hearing about him while watching the news.

<p>Heather Shay Photography</p>

Heather Shay Photography

"When the article came out that a baby was surrendered at a local fire station," Brittany told PEOPLE at the time, "I told Chris about it and prayed all weekend that we would be chosen as the foster parents to care for him and when we got that call we were so excited and couldn’t wait to meet him."

On Dec. 18, 2023, the Tylers officially adopted Samuel — and the baby, who spent two weeks in the NICU before coming home to the family, is now thriving.

"He has grown into a very happy loving little boy," Brittany told PEOPLE. "He is learning new things every day and I’m so excited to continue watching him grow and learn. We are so happy to have him officially adopted and know that he is a part of our family forever."

And the family continues to grow. The couple said on Today that they are in the process of adopting another child, a little girl whom they are currently fostering.

"Samuel is obsessed with her. He tries to pick her up like a baby doll and she just takes it," Brittany joked.

She added about her youngest son’s journey: "My prayers were answered.”

For more People news, make sure to sign up for our newsletter!

Read the original article on People.