78-year-old woman fosters over 80 infants in 30 years and has no plans of stopping

78-year-old Linda Owens from Hayward, California was the mother to 81 infants in 34 years. She cared for a 7-week-old baby girl who just came from a hospital. The baby is the 81st infant that Linda cares for as a resource parent.

A local news station called KPIX honored Owens with a Jefferson Award for her selfless efforts.

Caring for a newborn is not easy but with all those years of experience, it comes naturally to Owens.
She is a retired grocery department manager who chooses to take care of these babies. Linda fosters two infants at a time and has even cared for three sets of twins.She spends for the babies even though she receives financial support. Owens is an amazing mom!

Some of the newborns were unfortunately exposed to drugs in the womb. As a result, these poor babies experience developmental delays. Many of them don’t sleep well.There are over 500 resource parents in the country with Owens among the longest-serving. Linda is in a “category almost all by herself” according to Buckner-Preston.

There are over 500 resource parents in the country with Owens among the longest-serving. Linda is in a “category almost all by herself” according to Buckner-Preston.

Pediatrician Mika Hiramatsu says Owens’ experience as a foster parent has her bringing babies to Owens since the 74-year-old’s love for the children really shows.

“She’s always been very optimistic, always determined to give these babies the best possible start in their lives,” said Dr. Hiramatsu.

And because of Owens’ efforts, their parents also have the best start with the babies.

Erica adopted a baby girl she fostered 12 years ago and it was Owens who gave her the advice she needed. Especially how to put the child to sleep.
“She’s in her crib. Leave her alone. I know you want to play with her but if you wake her up, you’ll start interrupting her sleep,” Erica said.

Erica and her daughter maintained communication with Owens, even visiting from time to time so Owens remains updated with the child’s milestones.

Owens is always thrilled to learn that the babies once under her care are growing into healthy teens with bright futures.

“She’s turned out beautiful,” Owens said. “It makes you feel good that you fulfilled your job.”
Saying goodbye to babies she once cared for is never easy either.

Owens cares for the babies until it’s time to give them to their birth or adoptive families. Letting go always makes her sad but she knows it’s part of her calling.