DRACUT (CBS) — Joanne Grace had at least a dozen hugs waiting for her this Mother’s Day.

Joanne and her husband Kevin are proud parents of 11 children, six of them are adopted.

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One is 24-year-old Aaron, who was a Wednesday’s Child years ago.

Jack Williams with Aaron as a Wednesday’s Child. (WBZ-TV)

“Without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today,” said Aaron.

Aaron’s childhood before Wednesday’s Child had been full of abuse, but he had fond memories of the segment.

“We were going around the zoo the whole entire time and we were having so much fun,” he recalled.

Some of the Grace family (WBZ-TV | Paul Burton)

Aaron has come a long way since then. He just graduated from college from UMass Lowell and is planning to pursue his masters in education.

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“When mom and dad told me they wanted to adopt me, they said, ‘Aaron, we fell in love with you as soon as we saw you,’ and that melted my heart.”

He added, “My mom always says, ‘family always sticks together.'”

 

Joanne Grace (WBZ-TV)

Not surprisingly, Joanne is an advocate for adoption.

“If you are thinking about adopting, or doing foster care, do it,” she said.

She told WBZ-TV that each of her 11 children was a reason to be thankful.

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“They give so much back, you give to them, but they give you more.”